What's All This Then

Why should I care what this guy has to say?

The correct answer is that you shouldn’t. We’re all entitled to our opinions. Develop your own. I try to be sane and rational, but that may change with the level of caffeine intake. I’m just telling my stories in the hopes they may amuse and/or inform others. And... I Confess... I'm showing off my bitchen collection a bit.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Talking Heads meet Robert Rauschenberg

Talking Heads were on the smarty/arty side of the punk rock/new wave movement.  They came out of the Rhode Island School of Design.  Their original name was The Artistics.   

For their 1983 release 'Speaking in Tongues' they commissioned artist Robert Rauschenberg to design the cover.  The suits at Sire weren't too happy about how elaborate (and expensive) it was.   The album was released to the masses in a standard cover.

A few of the elaborate ones were pressed up anyway and offered on a limited basis.  They were expensive and sold out quickly.  I managed to find one for under $10 in a used bin.

Talking Heads - Speaking in Tongues (Sire 1983)

The packaging consisted of a clear vinyl record sandwiched between three circular transparencies.  Each transparency was a different color.  

The effect was close to one of Rauschenberg's collages. It would look different each time you put it away...

Note that the outer plastic has yellowed.  Originally it was clear.
There was a major downfall to the packaging.  The material used for the transparencies created some weird chemical reaction when residing next to the vinyl.  Some of it rubbed off and couldn't be removed. The vinyl - even though there are no visible scars - is very noisy.  Perhaps it was never meant to be played at all.   Sometimes art trumps function.

This limited edition cover won a Grammy.