Sad news: Ron Leibman, 'Up The Academy' star who played Major Vaughn Liceman dies at 82
Ron Leibman, who starred in films such as "Norma Rae," "Slaughterhouse-Five" and "Where's Poppa?" – and played Rachel Greene's nasty father on TV's "Friends" – died Friday at 82.
Leibman's agent, Robert Attermann of Abrams Artists Agency, confirmed the passing of the "incredibly talented actor with a distinguished career in film, TV and theatre" in a statement. Leibman infamously asked to have his acting credit removed from "Up The Academy" as he felt the material or finished product was below his standards.
Leibman, a native New Yorker who was married to actress Jessica Walter, made his big-screen debut in director Carl Reiner's 1970 dark comedy "Where's Poppa?" He worked steadily in films, including as the labor organizer Reuben in 1979's "Norma Rae," starring alongside Oscar-winner Sally Field as the title character.
He won an Emmy award playing reformed car thief, Martin ‘Kaz’ Kazinsky, who becomes a criminal attorney in the short-lived CBS crime drama "Kaz." The series, which he co-wrote and created, ran for a 23-show season starting in 1978, and then was cancelled.
Top Cat ads plus lyrics!
A few new photos
Working on a new music project (details to follow) and I found a few new Blow-Up photos to add to site. Check out the Photo Album.
From the punk days...
The cat is out of the bag
Our friends at Big Stir let it out...
A brand new Blow-Up recording and a live treasure from the vaults will be released Friday, May 3. “Reckless Hearts (2018 Version” b/w “What Goes On (Live at The Roxy 1985)” are available for preorder now.
A new Blow-Up single recorded in 2018? How did this happen?
1980's L.A. cult favorites Blow-Up were compared endlessly by enraptured critics to the Velvet Underground, Bob Dylan and The New York Dolls. They made their debut at the Masque in December 1977, and became a fixture on the scene, recording for legendary indie Bomp! Records and providing key songs for motion pictures Up the Academy and Flashback. Their 1984 Easy Knowledge album made best-of-the-year lists from Robert Christgau and Mikal Gilmore (who deemed them "pretty amazing" and the "best garage-pop band in L.A."), and they were nominated "Best Underground Band" at the 1987 L.A. Weekly awards, alongside Social Distortion and Jane's Addiction. Pleasant Gehman wrote in one review of a Blow-Up compilation, "they gigged with everyone who was anyone in those days, including Berlin, the Dead Kennedys, Jim Carroll and The Replacements. Everyone used to say they were glam throwbacks — as in Mott the Hoople — not as in Poison. In fact, they were such a great band, and so far ahead of their time." Thank you!
After Blow-Up disbanded in 1988, vocalist Jody Worth became an Emmy-nominated writer and producer for such shows as Deadwood and NYPD Blue. Keyboardist Christian Super pulled a James Williamson, reinventing himself as an IT exec, while guitarist Bruce Nicholson became a Professor of English Lit. Guitarist (and Flipside co-founder) Pat DiPuccio continued with music, releasing several well-received albums, mostly under band name The Condors, including one for Big Stir Records of rare Blow-Up compositions called Joie De Vivre (which The Big Takeover ranked as one of the best of 2018).
During these sessions, Pat was joined by Jody, who sang lead on a new version of their song "Reckless Hearts." This also features late-period Blow-Up drummer Robert Williams (Tremblers, The Pop), with producer Steve Refling on bass. They've decided to release it as a Blow-Up single, along with a live take of The Velvet Undergrounds "What Goes On," recorded in 1985 at the Roxy Theatre, with Christian on organ, Ed Cirino and Paul Hilton on drums and bass, and the late, inimitable Spyder Mittleman on sax. We hope you like it!
BIG NEWS - New music coming
You read that right -- NEW music. Check back here on May 3rd for all the details.
Kool Kat Musik has picked up "Teenage News" for distribution. It's an excellent company, with very good taste (obviously)!
Founded in 1998, Kool Kat Musik is a diverse music sales and distribution company focused on the sales and marketing of independently released power pop-related titles.
Check out their store at this link.
Pat decided it was time to bring modern production and an assortment of excellent musicians to some of his favorite Blow-Up songs. The result is the Condor's new EP "Joie De Vivre" available now on Big Stir Records via CD Baby. Go HERE to check it out.
This six-song mini album is a upbeat, classic rock and roll, with an edgy side of pop on top. Jody joined in the fun and contributed some vocals, too. "Matter of Fact" is one of the best unreleased Blow-Up song so if you've never heard it, check it out on this album.
Pat's been doing interviews behind the release and it's already getting airplay on some of the best power pop and alternative pop rock online stations and blogs.
Setlists? We got 'em.
Every wondered what it was like to see a Blow-Up live show? In addition to our Bootleg Series, you can see exactly what was played at dozen of our shows with the addition of setlists to the Gig Listing page. Check out what we played when we opened for The Replacements and Billy Idol or what was on our punk-ish setlist for gigs at legendary venues, The Mabuhay Gardens Gardens and the Masque.
Many thanks to Jody for compiling all the setlists.
Memories of Club 88
If my math is right, Blow-Up played Club 88 eleven times back in the day. And we got to share the stage for those gigs with great L.A. bands like The Plimsouls and Backstage Pass.
I stumbled across this page today that has a lot of fun memories about the place. Check it out.
Club 88 page.
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