Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Song of the Day: 'Now I'm Shining' (live in church) by Maria McKee

This post isn't for everyone. But for fellow New Wavers who grew up worshiping Lone Justice like I did, did you know that in addition to being the half sister of Bryan MacLean (1946-1998) of the legendary psychedelic band Love, Maria McKee grew up a church fart, in a kooky Beverly Hills household -- her parents owned a bar -- with a mother who "received Jesus" after watching Billy Graham on television? 

A rabbit hole led me to an album of songs a young Maria did with her big brother ("No One Was Kinder") -- he started a band for her in 1980, a couple years before she was "discovered" by Linda Ronstadt on the Sunset Strip -- including two recorded at the family church. And THIS ARTICLE, which was unintentionally unsettling, with nonstop talk of religion; rampant drug abuse; codependency; mental illness; not-so-veiled family resentments; lengthy estrangements; and further details of MacLean's abbreviated life including that he appeared in "An Affair to Remember"; auditioned to be one of the Monkees; was advised to pursue acting by Jack Nicholson; was childhood friends with Dino Martin (Dean's son) and Liza Minnelli (Judy's daughter); and other juicy details about the dynamic bipolar duo.

Maria, of course, has more talent than she knows what to do with, her songs having been covered by a who's who of 20th century artists. She's also been romantically linked with everyone from Robbie Robertson to Dennis Hopper, and was touted to be the "next big thing" in the 1980s in a way that hasn't been replicated since. I recently watched and was blown away by the HBO documentary about Jane Fonda, frequently saying to myself that people don't live lives like that anymore. Add Maria McKee to that list. Truly unreal. 


Bill Carter said...

Love's "Forever Changes" is a stunningly beautiful work of art. One of the greatest albums of the 60s. And the irony is, it was created by a bunch of fucked-up junkies, many of whom later did time for robberies, gun crimes, arson, drug crimes, etc.

Of course, by the time "Forever Changes" was released, former band member Bobby Beausoleil had moved on. He joined the Manson Famly.

If you haven't done so already, check out the 2003 CD of Love's performance in London, which features a live note-for-note recreation of "Forever Changes" before a rapturous audience.

Love Child said...

Super cool. You had me at "Love" (killer band) haha. Thanks for sharing!