WTM #1031: Guru Bob Ross

imageswReck thiS meSS ~ Radio Patapoe 88.3
Amsterdam ~ Ethno-Illogical Psycho-Radiographies
PTP: 88.3FM
15 september 2008 // 17.00-19.00

“Leave some holes in the sky”
Bob Ross 
“It won’t climb a hill just to be pretty for you.”
Bob Ross
For Birds, Planes & Cello [exc] > Miya [1]
Speaking In Tongues > Terrence McKenna & Spacetime Consortium [2]
Chime Again > Philip Jeck [3]
Taksu > Lights in the Fat City [4]
Creating > Bob Ross [5]
Dawn > Wild Shores [6]
The Big Sky > Kate Bush [7]
“Gonna get a beautiful green. I want this to be very soft, very soft, a quiet area where you take life easy”
Bob Ross
(“Come on Buddy-You Got”) Green Light > Bugge Wesseltoft [8]
When You > Bob Ross [5]
+ Memory > Lights [4]
Big White Clouds > John Cale [9]
Into the Trees > Trentmoller [10]
M Music > Terry Riley [11]
Queen of Bees > Victoria Fenner [12]
The Wall with the Paintings > The Reflection [13]
Nesso > Vladislav Delay [14]
“Beat the devil out of it”
Bob Ross
Moonlight on Vermont > Captain Beefheart [15]
Journey > Lights [4]
A Little Pond > Bob Ross [5]
Pastoral Angst > John Cale & Bob Neuwirth [16]
Hidden Sugars > Matthew Herbert [17]
+ Perfect Sky > Bob Ross [18]
An Apple > Matthew Herbert [17]
The Most Wanted Song/The Most Unwanted Song > Komar & Melamid/Dave Soldier [19]
I Saw the Sky > Trentmoller [10]
Minatur > Archive + Bob Ross [20]
Oil, it has to be the most forgiving medium of all”
Bob Ross
[1] For Birds, Planes & Cello, Solitary B, 2008.
[2] Alien Dreamtime, Astralwerks, 1993.
[3] Sand, Touch, 2007.
[4] Sound Column, Extreme, 1996.
[5] It is only in a world bereft of earnestness that one cannot become inspired or at least a bit spooked by Bob Ross. The casual and zen-like ad hoc nature of his wisdom plus the almost conventional and patented wisdom that seems to come across like some melodic panacea – his voice. Here are some pieces i did manage to sample. Send his work immediately to the [waring] governments all around the world and achieve world piece in our lifetime.
[6] Instant Music, Thule Ultima, 1996.
[7] Hounds of Love, EMI vinyl, 1985.
[8] New Conception of Jazz, Jazzland, 1996.
[9] Vintage Violence, Columbia vinyl, 1970.
[10] The Last Resort, Poker Flat, 2006.
[11] Les Yeux Fermés/Lifespan, Ellision Fields, [1972] 2007.
[12] Deep Wireless 3: Radio Art Compilation, New Adventures in Sound Art, 2006. “The workers are underdeveloped females.”
[13] Belgian [Limburg] grunge alternative band.
[14] Multila, Efa Imports, 2000.
[15] Trout Mask Replica, Warner vinyl, 1969. There seems to be some kind of spiritual overlap between Ross and Beefheart.
[16] Last Day on Earth, MCA, 1994.
[18] BR had an ability to somehow simplify thoughts, actions, vision. And after a long night out he was the perfect ‘thing’ to come home to. Chips, a last beer, a nightcap, a recap of the evening’s events and the philosophy of Bob Ross in the background working like a lullaby, like a mantra, like a hypnotic strategy. He made it seem that post-mod dysphoria, that our
[19] The People’s Choice Music, Mulatta, 2002. Although I like many of their conceptual art doings, this one disappoints it is annoyingly not that annoying. Maybe it is just the mix or the conceit itself…
[20] Archive I, 90% Wasser, 2006.
Bob Ross (October 29, 1942 – July 4, 1995) lives on in our memories, in our kidneys. Bob Ross loves the color of one of our kidneys. His art amazes. I mean those brush strokes late at night were magic. The voice like a mantra guiding us through the confusion of existence and his paintings settings our minds, our hearts, our souls at ease. The other songs in title or content or feel remind me of Ross.
I did not learn any techniques regarding painting on his Joy of Painting [like the Joy of Sex, Joy of Cooking and other such concept/books] or holding a brush or how to paint coastlines or surf or mountains with snow or babbling brooks or rocks in a stream or stormy clouds a brewing…  Or beating the devil outa your brush to clean it. Instead, I learned he had other lessons, secret lessons behind the canvas, beyond the mix of paints, he could ell us the secrets of existence and he did and did we record them, did we write them down – no!
I learned that the modulation of his voice soothed me after a night of indulgence and partying. He calmed the savage spirit, he reoriented longings, he was that perfect conduit between comfort food, the munchies and meditation. I know I wasn’t the only one in the 1980s; there were many like me and in a kind of ragged, exhausted, over-extended, raw and impressionable state of [altered] consciousness EVERYthing he seemed to say seemed to have more wisdom attached to it than merely the technical aspects of painting. He is the role model for Bob Dobbs church of the subgenius and perhaps a not-so-distant cousin of Chancy Gardner in Kozinski’s BEING THERE.
I think the secret to hypnosis, to meditation, to altered states of consciousness is a voice with plenty of vibrato and he had just that…
Born in plain old small town Pennsylvania, he learned painting while being a desk jockey in the Air Force stationed in Alaska, which served as inspiration for most of his nature paintings. He believed everyone had a talent for painting hidden somewhere within themselves and would often say “We don’t make mistakes, we just have happy little accidents,” which exemplifies a kind of can-do Buddhism. And he had a love for small [injured] creatures like squirrels, which he would nurse back to health and let them appear on his show.
Alas like all originals and geniuses, he has spawned a mega-industry in lookalikes and Bob Ross painting courses, a line of products and his son Steven serves as a certified BR instructor. He lives on in our habits of commerce. Bob Ross Inc. Has corralled the ‘illegal’ dissemination of his graven image on places like YouTube and is obviously anticipating a rerelease windfall. I wonder if he would have wanted it this way.

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