Log in

No account? Create an account
entries friends calendar profile Metphistopheles Previous Previous Next Next
Legends- Their fame and credibility may vary. - Blather. Rants. Repeat.
A Møøse once bit my sister ...
Legends- Their fame and credibility may vary.
One of many films we're hoping to get to (or, at least, to come to us in time) is Big Eyes, the documentaryish story of the Keane family and the art that the (mostly) credited artist (mostly) made in the 1960s.  I was familiar with the kitsch; one of "his" big-eyed paintings was long on display at one of my sister's homes, and Donna gave me a copy of a program from a New York gallery show from the era:


Inside the program is this rather spooky picture of the four of them:


In hindsight, the impostor gave his wife more credit there than anybody ever recognized- although he was more than happy to take credit for most of the paintings in the program, as well as all the accolades for "his" talent. The screenplay tells us that Walter denied full credit to his wife because the world would reject what he called "lady art," but it's good that she, now, is getting credit for everything on the walls of that gallery and not just the limited lines he allowed her, including this one from the program's back cover:


It took almost 50 years for her reputation to finally escape its prison, but the title's still a prescient one.

Closer to home today, we learned of the death of a local legend- not as well known beyond our area, but one who transcended genres and expectations himself. "Kim" in this piece is the wife of the local daily's pop music critic:

“We’re going to the Elmwood Lounge to hear this singer, who is the greatest lounge singer of all time,” Kim’s friend Kurt gushed. “And I want to introduce you all to these guys from this band who will be there. These guys are gonna be huge, I swear!”

That was the night she first encountered Lance Diamond, who died Sunday from complications resulting from heart disease.

And the guys from that band that was bound to make it? Robby Takac and John Rzeznik of the Goo Goo Dolls, whose friendship with Diamond endured over decades and included several stellar performances, among them a recording of Prince’s “I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man,” widely considered an underground classic.

Diamond bridged the seemingly massive chasm between lounge music, old school R&B, Vegas-style soul and gritty punk-pop. He was the guy everyone loved, whether they hung out at the old Continental four nights a week, or only ventured into the city proper once every two months for dinner, a play and maybe a late-night cocktail.

He was a living legend who could play a wedding, a lounge, a casino, a rock club or a massive outdoor stage during the Buffalo summertime, and the results would be the same – people danced, people sang along, people hoped Lance would throw them a rose or a cuff-link.

And people smiled.

In a rather amazing coinkidink, Diamond became known, more nationally and beyond his usual disco and lounge-act audiences, simply because he wound up living in the same apartment building as one of the Goo Goo Dolls. That led to him collaborating with the Goos on several of their recordings and tours. Perhaps the best known of their songs together is this CCR cover:

Buffalo these days is marketing itself with the moniker "For Real." Those are two words Lance Diamond epitomized- and that Walter Keane would have a hard time uttering.
Leave a comment