Shangri La - Rick Rubin

..and why not?
User avatar
Tactful Cactus
Posts: 18150
Joined: 16 Jul 2003, 14:21
Location: by your window

Shangri La - Rick Rubin

Postby Tactful Cactus » 18 Jul 2019, 09:08

I watched the first episode last night. For background, Rubin bought the old Shangri La studio as seen in the Last Waltz and it's now his own zen master studio where artists come to sit at his bare feet and record music. He's made a documentary series about it.

It's daubed with a bit of self deprecation but extremely self serving. Rubin sees himself as this godly conduit between the artist and the music, but says "this place" instead of himself so he doesn't sound like Charles manson. It's enough to keep watching.

A few observations :
Is Robbie Robertson OK? He seemed out of it, overweight and slurring his words. He doesn't look good. There was one moment where he saw the old "Band" sign and started to well up, could have been a lovely moment but Rubin talked over him and the moment passed! :D

Most of the interviews were insufferable, trying to out philosophise each other but David Lynch was great, he loves ZZ Top! They should have given him more time.

Is Rubin a bit of a fraud? A successful hanger on? He's not a producer in the traditional knob twiddling sense. Is he just an Eno type facilitator?

Anyway I'm going to keep watching, it was cringey and hilarious but also with some amazing shots of the coast and old archive footage. I'm hooked.

User avatar
Charlie O.
Posts: 40541
Joined: 21 Jul 2003, 19:53
Location: In-A-Badda-La-Wadda, bay-beh

Re: Shangri La - Rick Rubin

Postby Charlie O. » 18 Jul 2019, 12:50

Tactful Cactus wrote:Is Rubin a bit of a fraud? A successful hanger on? He's not a producer in the traditional knob twiddling sense. Is he just an Eno type facilitator?

I wouldn't call him a fraud - he knows what he's doing. But in the wake of those Johnny Cash albums, I got tired of people here and elsewhere talking about other oldsters that Rubin should "work his magic" on. He's not a magician. He had a simple and, in retrospect, rather obvious idea about what would work with Cash, and it did work with Cash. In my opinion it didn't work with Neil Diamond, and there was no real reason to assume that it would or should.

But let's not forget that he first came to prominence producing hugely influential records by Run-DMC, The Beastie Boys and Slayer. He's no one trick pony.

On a pedantic note: "knob twiddling" is traditionally the province of the engineer(s), not the producer. Back in the sixties, at least in the US, producers often weren't even allowed to touch the mixing board due to union regulations. The producer is more like the director on a film... or, in some cases, just the guy who makes sure things get done on time and under budget. An "Eno type facilitator" is a perfectly valid type of producer, as long as the end product is worthwhile/sells.
Image

User avatar
Snarfyguy
Dominated by the Obscure
Posts: 53439
Joined: 21 Jul 2003, 19:04
Location: New York

Re: Shangri La - Rick Rubin

Postby Snarfyguy » 20 Jul 2019, 02:57

My friend Billy Syndrome (RIP) was in a punk band called The Pricks with Rubin in Long Island in the early 80s.

"Little Ricky" was a apparently a pesty rich kid with loads of equipment so they let him be in the band.

The rest is history. Or not.
GoogaMooga wrote: The further away from home you go, the greater the risk of getting stuck there.

User avatar
Tactful Cactus
Posts: 18150
Joined: 16 Jul 2003, 14:21
Location: by your window

Re: Shangri La - Rick Rubin

Postby Tactful Cactus » 28 Jul 2019, 12:31

Three episodes in now and I'm enjoying. Some here will hate it. Its no "Classic Albums" -- its more philosophical and worthy. The most recent episode about death was the best yet.