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September 1988

Paul Neff in performance at the Multimedia Studios of the University of Iowa School of Art and Art History.

Tape-beatles Fight to Save Future
After Living Lifetime of Hurt

The room had become suddenly silent. The angry scowling faces of Lloyd and Paul and their stone cold eyes spoke to me; ‘John, do something.’ As I turned to leave thinking ‘forget it, man’ the photograph on the door of Ralph cued a loop of his words: ‘News. People want it.’

The Tape-beatles have experienced a lifetime of hurt. They were treated badly in art school, then turned to art prostitution, drugs, carried weapons, and used foul language.

The Tape-beatles lost their youth and now are trying to save what’s left of their future, say those who know them.

‘They understand their past and they care about their future. They’re doing the things they need to do to have a future,’ said F. John Herbert, business manager for the Drawing Legion.

‘My strong impression is that they will recover and make amends to society by becoming responsible adults. … They clearly intend to use their life experiences for the ultimate benefit of others and themselves,’ Dr. Eadweard ‘Smiley’ Snitzer, an Iowa City psychiatrist, told a district court judge in January. Dr. Snitzer pointed to the group’s activities as evidence to his beliefs:

  1. New address is: P.O. Box 8907, Iowa City IA 52244. All future correspondence to the Tape-beatles should be directed there.
  2. Scheduled 18 September performance at the Willy Street Fair Experimental Music Stage, organized by Xexoxial Editions’ Miekal And and Liz Was; taking place in Madison WI.
  3. Second edition t-shirts (like the one Ralph wears in the centerfold) to be coming out soon, white on black this time.
  4. It’s Another Iowa Compilation (Uncharted Territories) Southeast Records Lp due out 1 September, containing 2 cuts by the Tape-beatles, entitled ‘The Ads become the News’ and ‘Individual Choice.’
  5. The Tape-beatles are seeking nationwide distribution for their three-month old A subtle buoyancy of pulse; cassette, and doing most of it themselves.
  6. We’ve been bootlegged! (And we’re happy about it!)
  7. We’ve been interviewed! (by Bill Stuelke of the Daily Iowan, appearing in the 6 August edition).
  8. Tape-beatle Lloyd Dunn has initiated a one-half hour weekly radio ‘column’ on KRUI. The program, called RadioStatic, features networked music from around the world as received through the mails. It appears within a show by the name of Curious Music hosted by Russ Curry. Now more than ever are submissions encouraged for broadcast, review, and/or use on the semiyearly PhonoStatic cassette edition.

John Heck

This item first appeared in PhotoStatic Magazine no. 32.

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