This week on the music beat |


This week on the music beat

Marvin Pontiac and the Guess Who made music news April 7, 2000

Dada bluesman Marvin Pontiac has been praised by Beck, Bowie, and Iggy Pop; his new album, The Legendary Marvin Pontiac Greatest Hits, is getting favorable press. But who is this guy? None other than hipster John Lurie, leader of the Lounge Lizards and best known for scoring such Jim Jarmusch films as 1986’s Down by Law. ”I needed to create a character because I was too shy about my singing,” admits Lurie, who has fashioned an elaborate bio for his alter ego. Amusingly, some journalists have been roped into the hoax (Details hailed Pontiac as a ”world-music Tom Waits”). Lurie is anxious to keep the deception going: ”Could you wait a couple of months before you print this?”

Guess Who’s back.” ”Who?” ”Guess Who.” ”Who!?” ”I told ya, Guess Who…” Okay, it was funnier when Abbott and Costello did it. But you get the idea: After a 20-year feud between leaders Burton Cummings and Randy Bachman, and perhaps motivated by Lenny Kravitz’s Grammy-winning desecration of ”American Woman,” Canucks the Guess Who are re-forming for their first North American tour in 30 years.

”It won’t be one of those lame reunions where half the band is dead and the other half OD’d 10 times,” says Cummings, who, with Bachman, Garry Peterson, and Jim Kale, hits the U.S. in September. ”We’re the four originals, and we can all still play.” And with GW gems popping up in American Beauty and the Austin Powers sequel, the time’s ripe for a revival.

Cummings admits there were ”some pretty bad years between us. But now we realize how magical it is to play together.”