Llyn Foulkes’ Machine



listen to “Old L.A.




You have to observe this machine. The artist made it himself, for self-expressive purposes, during the transition of power from Carter to Reagan. It is a formidable instrument, made of horns & drums & tongs & bones & whatnot, all played barefoot (like the organist of St. Martin-in-the-Fields) by the artist, at the Church of Art in the Brewery, say, or even at California Plaza, in that vast outdoor plaza which brings to mind Tiny Alice by virtue of so strongly resembling an architectural model writ large.


What does it play? Foulkes’ songs, of course. One about Topanga, one about Hollywood at 3 A.M., that sort of thing. They’re quite long and involved, really. Almost epical, but that’s really more a frame of mind than a critical assessment. Foulkes’ feet fly, dominant and tonic, bulb horns blare, in various scales, a few SFX (same symbol as San Francisco International Airport—ours is LAX, but they might change its name to James Stewart International Airport, in which case it would be ex-LAX) off the burlesque stage, a cymbal crash for emphasis, that’s all.