Thursday, March 13, 2014

Ostensible reasons

This photo of Green Street in Cambridge, Mass., was posted by Ryan Walsh on his blog, Ryan Walsh Escapes His Fate. Walsh is the singer/guitarist/songwriter of the Boston-based band Hallelujah The Hills.

This excerpt is from Clinton Heylin's Can You Feel the Silence?:
The choice of Cambridge, Massachusetts, was an interesting one. Essentially a university town, centered around Harvard University, it lies across the river from that most English of New England cities, Boston. Morrison enjoyed the fact that it had "a lot of funky clubs, and a lot of bars where you [could] see R&B performers," and it was still no more than four hours from the hubbub of New York City. Morrison rarely revealed his real reason for being in Massachusetts, though his long-standing bassist Tom Kielbania remembers him once alluding to the fact that "he didn't have a very good relationship with Bang Records. There was a lot of hostilities there, and he [had] got paranoid of the whole situation." By the time John Payne joined the pair in September, his ostensible reason for skipping New York had become "wreck[ing] some PA equipment at some clubs, [so] no one would hire him any more."

Living down on Green Street, Morrison could take in the various clubs that served the student population. He was also able to connect with the small music community based in Boston. Almost the first musician to befriend Van was the lead singer in a local rock band, the Hallucinations (shortly to be renamed the J. Geils Band). Peter Wolf remembers how he and Morrison "would spend hours listening to music and hanging out at clubs. [Back then] there seemed to be a certain hopefulness—a sense that your dreams, if you worked hard enough, could come to fruition."

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