Here's a pop quiz on pop music created by Kurt that ran in the UCLA student newspaper The Daily Bruin on Wednesday, May 11, 1966. Perhaps you know the answers to a few of these 100 questions. If you know more than ten, you're either in the music business or you are getting old.
Once of the little-known chapters in Kurt's life is his short stint as a record producer for the experimental rock band The Red Krayola. By all accounts, the band was not a hit; its feedback-filled, free-form music pleased neither the crowds nor the critics. But it's an interesting story.
In 1983 Kurt was still talking about Rock and Roll, nearly 20 years after his book draft on the History of Rock and Roll. This time it was a reporter from The State Hornet, the newspaper of Sacramento State University. The article has been converted to digital text, and copy of the original page in the newspaper is also available.
In 1967 Kurt garnered the attention of KRLA BEAT, a radio station newspaper focused on the growing music scene. Their archive is now online, and in their current blog they note: "on page 13 is the curious news that the KRLA Beat was required reading at UCLA. Prof. Kurt von Meier, a polymath and enthusiast about mathematics, cosmology, and world culture, was teaching an art history course that was far ahead of its time. The Beat, he recognized, was a unique source of news about pop music and poular culture. "Here at home" he said to the Beat "we have some of the most meaningful poetry of the 20th century, put to music by Bob Dylan and Chuck Berry. It's also amazing to see how the Beatles continue to revolutionize their industry — their genius cannot be denied." I'm with him!" The entire article is available here.
Yes, that is Frank Zappa in the Polaroid photo above (the guy hugging him is not Kurt). In November of 1966, Professor von Meier organized the opening of a Harold Paris sculpture exhibit. Unfortunately, the sculpture was not available, but Kurt nonetheless managed to turn the event into an "installation" rather than an "exhibition." There were bands, including Zappa's Mothers of Invention, plus Canned Heat and other rock and roll groups. And a light show. And films. And all at the same time. As the article below from the UCLA Daily Bruin notes, it all "had a strange influence on the people there." As Kurt might say, "Ah, well."