SCALPED Director's Commentary: Part Four

This is a big week for SCALPED. Issue #14 of the regular series is out this week, the second part of our big new arc, "Dead Mothers," as well as the second trade, CASINO BOOGIE, featuring an introduction by Garth Ennis. In honor of that, here's another installment in our ongoing "Director's Commentary," featuring Guéra talking about the music that influences his vision for SCALPED:


It’s realism. Realism and shadows.

What “sounds” like this?

Cause, no matter how weird this reads - for me Scalped IS a feel.

OK, let’s just dig into music to help us…it’s what it’s for.

(but, please bear in mind that when I do put some of these below to play, it’s always two or three CDs in a row, so…go figure what illustrates what (ha,ha)…but I must say that this list is tremendously difficult for me…in fact ANY list, really…)

1.(just about anything by) Bob Dylan.
But if I must, well in last few months “Seven Days” & “Things have Changed” were enjoyed more than others, I suppose.
(…no comments on Bob. I think people should just shut up & keep on listening. Y’know…).

2. Neil Young
(if you know what I mean.) No comment. No comment… Just, y’know…

Other(s) with no special order:

·Blind Willie Johnson…(…)…

·Fumblin’ With The Blues: Tom Waits·

·Ice Cream Man: Tom Waits·

·Ah well, come on - ALL of early Waits·

·Do I Move You: Nina Simone·
(sexiest musical piece in history, I DID listen to this while drawing Carol-Dash sex scene …When not, I tried to remember it…This is officially admitted now, eh, I never told this to anyone before. I actually & directly used this song for that scene).

·CD “Source Point” by John Hammond.
Each & every track. He never reached this level again. It’s 11 tracks like one song. One session. One morning (which it probably was).

·Okie Dokie Stomp: Gatemouth Brown·
Wonderful guitar playing, one of few that can naturally transmit emotion AND fun. Also, tremendously influential but totally underrated…

·As The years Go Passing By (live version form ’77): Albert King·
…voice, guitar(s), Gallagher there, final rhythm change, song…
(It’s heavy stuff when you really open your heart to the audience. But for real, eh. Not jumping all over stage. Digging is the word. I know people who are sarcastic towards something like this, as it’s SO openly emotional & so openly loves somebody. And says it. People run away from this, because they can’t believe it’s true I suppose. Try it…)

·Wicked Act: Black Uhuru.
Tremendous piece. So soft but so deeply harsh at the same time…Go out & buy anything from ’77 ‘till ’83. they recorded. Just…NOTHING sounds like them…

·Ventilator Blues: Rolling Stones·

·Happy: Rolling Stones· but c’mone, ALL “Exile…” & more around this album.

·Go Back Home: Stephen Stills·
Nice. Simply nice & refreshing in any list combination. Way back from ’71. Clapton at his best at the end. Hendrix also plays in that album.

· Johnny Cash.
…Just this name. Anything by this name.

·Roller Coaster: Little Walter·
(this one has some strange power over me….I always felt it as sound of the moment -about early in the morning, when you can't drink a drop more, as you drank a gallon last night. You slept a bit but you’re not sure where, you’re at your way home, and suddenly – some totally unexpected energy comes in. Maybe it’s just morning sun, y’know. But you do feel this weird clearness where it shouldn’t appear. If you ever had a stroke of that feel – this song explains it for me…)

·Blues In C: Modern Jazz Quartet·
(Deep, slow, elegant, dignifying…& blue. VERY.)

· Howlin’ Wolf ·…these two words need nothing added…

·You Got The Silver: Susan Tedechi & Derek Trucks·
Fresh & with some absolutely incredible guitar playing. Duanne is among us again. But this time for real.

·Million Miles Away: (live version) Rory Gallagher·

·In Your Town: Rory Gallagher·

·Allman Bros. Live At Fillmore East (this is ONE song for me)·

·Suitcase Blues: Hollywood Fats·
very few things achieve class of classic, by being totally classic. Well, this one does. Instantly.

·London Calling: Clash· …but in fact - all Clash. All. God, was I proud when Johnny Cash recorded with Strummer…

·Any Peter Green with Fleetwood Mac·
One & only Peter. No white boy comes even close to this guitar… Backed up by Kirwain, and rock-solid rhythm. Awh, peoples. “Jam At Chess” & ”Boston live” maybe more than anything.

I stop, I stop, Jesus Christ, this list REALLY could be endless. I never even touched actual bands & players. It’s just that I have hundreds of CDs from “way back” & I’m used to play ‘em…

The best I could say maybe, is that MUSIC is part of Scalped…As long as it’s visually clear it can’t be bad music, does it really matter which?…

Thank you

Ps…& has ANYBODY of you heard of Watermelon Slim?… And those not among us any more like Juke Boy Bonner, Magic Sam?… And what about Gerry Mulligan?
Awh peoples…


Esco at: 10:29 PM said...

Fleetwood Mac Live @the Boston Tea Party. Awesome show. "Jumpin at Shadows" knocks me out as well as Jeremy Spencer's "Can't hold out".

Stones are awesome. Begger's Banquet, Sticky Fingers, Exile, Goats Head Soup, a classic run.

Neil Young, Dylan, TOM WAITS, need to add Townes Van Zant to that list.

Albert King. I hate when I'm talking Blues to someone and they bring up Stevie Ray first. Albert King, Lonnie Mack, Johnny Winter, cmon!

I know what you mean about that Allman Bros. disc.

Little Walter. Howlin' Wolf. The Masters! Check out The Red DEvils KIng, King cd for some great covers of these two's cuts.
I saw Hubert Sumlin a couple years back. Awesome show. David Johanson on vocals, Levon Helm on drums.

John Hammond. I love Mileage, I can Tell, and Real Country Blues(?). I've seen him live and he's amazing.

Nina Simone. Ooof! Wicked.

You've got great taste in music Bro.
Music w/ soul and it seems to really fall onto your incredible pages. Very cool.

RM Guéra at: 8:49 AM said...


RM Guéra at: 8:54 AM said...

........& phew(...).

Felt risky tho.
I thought I'd surely be considered as freak. This means at least one won't consider me as one...

Relief, man, relief...(& thanks for Van Zant add)

Anonymous at: 10:11 AM said...


I've been working with an internal "score" of sorts on two of my projects--you called it "feel"; I call it "atmosphere"...I actually like "feel" better.

Your blog made my day--I'm going to take some of the artists/songs you've got listed and make a playlist/CD/whatever to listen to when I read's easily one of the best books I read every month.

I can't recommend it fast enough.

Steve Ekstrom

David Gallaher at: 10:24 AM said...

This is awesome, gents! Tom Waits in particular is one of the driving muses behing HIGH MOON. Very slick!

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