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Junk Bands

Junk Bands. Not Jug Bands. Though, on the other hand, Jug Bands are Junk Bands.

But I was thinking in particular of Junk Bands like the National Junk Band, at least one whose songs will bring a smile to the mental lips of any fan of Monty Python.

What I was in particular thinking when I was thinking about Junk Bands was: they use junk to make music, and they look like they're having fun doing it. And it seemed to me that the deep playfulness displayed by these Bands is a genuinely actual act of Sung Heroism (as opposed to the unsung kind).

Consequently, on behalf of Major Fun, I hereby and -with welcome them, players of Junk and Jugs and Washboards, too, each "Defenders of the Playful," musical Junkmasters all.

Stomp!

When it comes to having fun with junk, it's hard to think of a more inspired group of performers than Stomp.

Here are some notes from the show's creators:

"Ideas come from anywhere. A lot of it is using manual props because they obviously lend themselves to rhythm and drumming like a broom or hitting a dustbin or hammers - they are quite obvious things. Other ideas are more surreal, like walking on oil drums - just drawing little pictures and wouldn't it be great to have great platform shoes and people walking around on them. The ultimate STOMP. And in small things where you want to introduce visuals as well as sound like Zippo lighters, which is trying to do something which is quiet and it makes you listen and you tune in to it. But they are all everyday objects that you can use, anybody can find and anyone can have a go at."

"You can make music out of absolutely anything, whether it's, you know, tapping an old Coke can, or picking up pebbles on a beach. It's what you want to do it."

"If there is a message (which everyone seems to expect from theatre), it is that you can make something out of nothing. Using junk , household and industrial objects, by its very nature, challenges the issue of waste and challenges the notion of culture as being highbrow or detached (ie, you don't have to buy a cello or a drum kit to make music)."

Nor do you have to buy a stadium to play baseball.

Play on!

Simultaneous Horseshoes

It was April 18. In the afternoon. In El Retiro park. In Redondo Beach. In California. The South Bay Fun Club's first ever Junkyard Sports event. Where the new, official, Junkyard Sports Banner was formally unfurled, and the game of Simultaneous Sock and Pantyhose Horseshoes was invented.

Pictured here is a "Bernie moment" leading to the unfoldment of the sport of Simultaneous Sock and Pantyhose Horseshoes.

The game was played thusly: Two teams of four players each stood at opposite ends of the Simultaneous Sock and Pantyhose Horseshoe Field, immediately behind small, open cardboard boxs, placed, o, let's say, 10 meters apart. These boxes were easily large enough to serve as a target for a Sock and Pantyhose Horseshoe, the aforementioned horseshoe being constructed by placing four tightly-balled socks into the toe of a pantyhose leg which was cut from the pantyhose leg somewhere near the thigh area, if you excuse the expression.

One team had the Sock and Pantyhose Horseshoes made from two pairs of black pantyhose, the other from white.

And then, at a mutually agreed-upon scream, both teams threw their Sock and Pantyhose Horseshoes trying to get them to land in or near the above-indicated cardboard box.

And merry mayhem ensued.

Note: playing this with hard things, like iron horseshoes and maybe even frisbees, is not recommended.

Calvinball Cont'd

"So, as far as I can tell, it began with a modified baseball field - not a diamond, because it had nine bases, more or less.  Owain deemed himself batter, and me the pitcher.  Gwynneth decided that a bench in the middle was a jail, and a water bottle the magic implement which, if contacted, sent you to jail.  Owain realized that touching the ball froze you.  Ball and bottle counteract each other, defreezing or freeing you, respectively.  Naturally, a huge, rideable plastic car had to be involved, so there was much pulling and riding, shrieking and freezing as the thing careened across the not-exactly-a-baseball-diamond.  When everyone ended up in jail, we improvised a baseball game on top of the bench."

Bryan Alexander

(see also)

Thumb Warrior

"For those who count themselves amongst the half-vast aficionados of Thumb Wrestling, for the multitudes who have experienced the joys of victory and the oft painful agonies of defeat, take heart. For I, Major Fun, Major Fun, Defender of the Playful, bring you this day with this very document the elegant, the pragmatic, the eminently playworthy Thumb Helmet."

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