the Music: The Life and High Times of Elektra Records in the
Great Years of American Pop Culture
Jac Holzman and Gavin Dawes
ANDERLE: Tim was already signed when I came to Elektra.
JAC: Herbie Cohen had sent me Tim's demo.
HERB COHEN: One of the great voices of our time. He had a
four-octave range, five if he wanted to stretch it. Just brilliant.
JAC: I listened to it over and over. If I was down I would
play it and it would lift me. And as an artist to sign...he
was so gifted, so original, the talent and the vision still
ANDERLE: When I came, Tim had done his first album, and he
was just finishing "Goodbye And Hello". I remember
Jac and I listening to it together, both of us being so in
love with that album.
JAC: The pain and purity of the song writing, the plaintiveness
of his melodies, the nakedness of his vocals, the artistic
risks. I had believed in Tim from the beginning, and the enchantment
of "Goodbye And Hello" exceeded anything I could
have hoped for.
STEVE HARRIS: At his high point, Tim did a concert at Avery
Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center. It was sold out. When he looked
out he said something that was unintelligible, but it was
almost like, "Oh shit". He didn't want it. He didn't
seem nervous, he just seemed pissed off, almost, you know,
"OK, I've done this, now what do I have to do?"
The concert was wonderful, it was fabulous. He had it all
at his fingertips. And he had nowhere to go. After that, his
whole musical outlook and his perception of what he was about
and doing, changed. Almost the next day, changed.
COHEN: Whatever success he had, he would try to avoid it.
JAC: On the Tonight Show he would insult the host, or he would
refuse to lip-sync and walk out. At the Improv he would be
on stage, snoring, and I heard about him once barking at an
DAVID ANDERLE: He was poised all the time to become a major
pop artist. Because he was so attractive and his voice was
so beautiful, it was a natural tendancy to say, "Come
on, man, you could do this in your sleep and have everything
you want." He had pressure from Herbie to do it more
commercially. He had pressure from the label to try and make
singles. He had pressure from everybody to do it in a certain
way. And he rejected it. He wanted so badly to do his own
music. I went to every one of his gigs at the Troubadour.
A lot of times he would have a good audience for the opening
show, but at the midnight show there might only be 3 or 4
people. It never bothered him. He would get into his experimental
mode. Sometimes he would do one number for the whole set.
He didn't give a shit, as long as he got to play what he wanted
FARALLA: The time I remember best with Tim was going down
to Venice one night, and we cruised the bars, jazz bars, whatever,
having the night I always wanted to spend with Tim. Just reaching
into his mind. A lot of talk about jazz.
DAVID ANDERLE: I think he had the jazz demon. Certain guys--Charlie
Parker, Thelonius Monk--they go after this unattainable thing.
The music Tim was hearing was really different. And he had
demons he could not control.
STEVE HARRIS: Tim was self destructive, changing what he did,
going into drugs. The last time I saw him was at a club in
San Francisco. He was playing jazz and it was interesting.
But all that went through my mind was how important an artist
he could have been. He was so eager to talk about old times
at Elektra. Elektra was Camelot and people never realized
it better than when, like Tim, they went elsewhere. I could
see it in his eyes, talking about how well he was treated
SELWOOD: The first time Tim came to England he was at our
new house, and he went out in the backyard, which was still
uncultivated, and played with our little daughter for an hour
and came back in all covered with mud. The hippie child.
"Follow the Music", Jac Holzman and Gavan Daws provide an
inside look at the music industry that most of us have never
been privy to before. Not only did they do that, but they
also allow us to see what it takes to build a business from
the ground up. The book is filled with obvious careful attention
to detail. The roots of folk music and the stories behind
all the troubadours that made up the music scene in Greenwich
Village and L.A. in the fifties, sixties, and seventies are
captivating and right on the money - Jack Brolly
US Publisher: Jawbone
Press (August 30, 2000)