Sunday, November 07, 2010

So who are all those people on your album cover anyway?

"The Speaker's Corner From Hell" is what I dubbed the album cover for Can You Hear Me? The album's title track is a conversation between the parent of someone whose child has been killed and the person who committed the act. It is ultimately a tale of forgiveness and reconciliation. The cover art is thus premised on "alternative" or fringe voices throughout history, many we have integrated into our cultural ethos, others we are still not hearing as much as we should be, or at all (and of course with members of the band tossed in there just for kicks)... I've often been asked who everyone on the album cover is. Many people have identified several of the characters, but none have nailed 100%. So I thought I'd do that here.

1. Emily Carr (artist)
2. Matt Laforest (drummer / writer)
3. Andy Kaufman (song and dance man)
4. Nancy Spungen (dancer)
5. Sid Vicious (bassist / Sex Pistol)
6. Sue Johanson (sexologist)
7. Jean-Michel Basquiat (artist)
8. Jhoon Goo Rhee (father of American Taekwondo)
9. Bruce Lee (philosopher / martial artist)
10. Karl Marx (philosopher / writer)
11. Margaret Trudeau (First Lady of Canada)
12. Langston Hughes (poet / revolutionary)*
13. Henry Miller (writer)
14. Virgina Woolf (writer)
15. Mumia Abu-Jamal (journalist / activist / wrongly-convicted death row resident)
16. William S. Burroughs (reader and writer)
17. Rachel LaGroix (manager, the angel on Satan's shoulder)
18. Satan (cultural icon)
19. Hunter S. Thompson (gonzo journalist)
20. Isadora Duncan (dance's original badass)
21. Johnny Cash (The Man in Black)
22. Marilyn Monroe (the beginning and end of beauty)
23. Carter G. Woodson (writer / The Mis-education of the Negro)
24. Salvador Dali (artist / genius)
25. Raffaelo (artist whose painting "School of Athens" is the backdrop of this album cover)
26. James Dean  (the beginning and end of beauty, the male version)
27. Aldous Huxley (writer / prophet)
28. Betty Paige (hot damn)
29. Kurt Cobain (musician / poet)
30. Robb Johannes (musician / activist)
31. Jeff Logan (musician / rehab doll)
32. Ian Curtis (singer / poet / genius)
33. Luke Lombardini (musician)
34. Marcus Warren (musician)
35. Paula McGlynn (guitarist / writer / voice of an angel)
36. Charles Darwin (unveiler of truth)
37. Malcolm X (a Black Prince)
38. James Baldwin (writer)
39. Michel Foucault (philosopher / experimenter)
40. Oscar Wilde (writer / critic / artist)
41. Damien Echols (writer / wrongly convicted death row resident)
42. Leonard Peltier (Elder / wrongly convicted prisoner)
43. Truman Capote (in whose cold blood?)
44. Shannon Hoon (singer / poet / young soul)
45. Pixie (Robb Johannes' estranged cat)
46. Andy Warhol (artist / philosopher / icon)
47. Emma Goldman (philosopher / revolutionary)
48. Noam Chomsky (modern day prophet)
49. Bill Hicks (philosopher / comic / genius)
50. Edie Sedgwick (tragic heroine)
51. Frida Kahlo (artist)
52. Hariet Tubman (freedom fighter)

* The fellows beside Langston Hughes are still unidentified.