Twenty years later things looked a little less bleak.
Oh, yes - The winter of acid folk rock.
Asked to help out a friend (stage name Mr. E) with some equipment for gigs in a dive Bar 23 on soi nana, Chinatown, I’d taken the favor as a challenge. I had a notion about a dishwasher from Belarus with movie star aspirations. He boards the wrong cargo ship and ends up in Bangkok rather than California. He washes dishes for the quasi-stars, is recruited by a shady talent agency and slums it with the failed actors and drunken singers and feral hookers in the Bangkok metropolis. I’d written as a musical over a weekend the songs were pregnant in my mind.
Broadside on stage sat writing sensation, creator of the world’s first slice of viral media and all round best buddy Hugh Gallagher on drums. Gallagher was the man behind MTV generation star Von Von Von and back in town after a year’s stint back in the States producing the world’s first book of spirituality to contain the phrase motherfucker eighty-three times.
His handbook the I Ching eagerly promoted around
this time betwixt sessions hitting the camel-skinned bongos.
|Me and Von.|
An acoustic guitar and a zoom effects unit – but this was art for art’s sake. Apart from beer, which to be fair, I had my fair share of – this was a non-paying gig.
Practical people don’t have children. A film, a book, a painting, is like a child. A thing we bring into the world with the best intentions – but sometimes the world has other ideas. Sometimes the world decides to quit shaving and smoke cigars and hang out on lower Sukhumvit Road.
Arriving in Bangkok sixteen years ago, the words started flowing as soon as the city surrounded my anxious naivety.
I’d check into a cheap hotel with a view over a city street and a vanity dresser. The laptop sat where make-up should have and I’ll hammer out a few thousand words a day. A few months later I’d have a novel. Hungry, insane, and drunk on cheap beer this madness continued for roughly ten years during which time I’d married, divorced and having won custody of the kids set up a new home in the capital. Real kids, unlike artistic creations, require nurturing and to this end I’d named my first born son and my fictional detective both the same – Joe Dylan. A break-through of sorts was reached when the film rights were sold to The White Flamingo. The film-maker flew over and development began – again that film-maker thing has waved its cute little ass in my direction once. And again I was broke, yet hungry.
|Jim Algie, Me, and Thom Locke at the Checkinn99|
It was here that we'd work on a ghost hunting documentary and edge closer to the film world.