Thursday, September 06, 2007

Beck and His Family

The other day I was listening to the KCRW 's Morning Becomes Eclectic 3oth anniversary show, one of the clips they had was a interview that helped launch Beck to stardom. It was a little weird to listen to it, because I got into Beck in the Summer of of 1995 after Mellow Gold had already came out. By the time I found out about Beck, he already had a hipster persona.

Though the KCRW interview shows that at one time Beck was a semi-homeless musical nerd. According to the Mellow Gold documentary people would call Beck "farm boy" because of the way he dressed. To support himself during this time, he took a variety of low-paying jobs, and even lived in a shed. All the while continuing to develop his music and trying to break into the industry. He would preform any where from punk clubs to coffee shops even busking on the streets. For a while Beck performed on the streets as a duo with Chris Ballew (founder of The Presidents of the United States of America). Beck sneaked onto stages at venues all over Los Angeles.

Tom Rothrock first heard Beck when he saw him jump on stage to play in between bands during a show at Jabberjaw and approached him afterwards about recording his songs. Then Tom Rothrock, Rob Schnapf and Bradshaw Lambert signed Beck to Bong Load Custom Records. Tom then introduced Beck to hip hop nuance producer Carl Stephenson. Together they collaberated the song Loser, which was created a sensation when radio host Chris Douridas played the song on Morning Becomes Eclectic. That exposure and a subsequent live performance on the show July 23, 1993 led to a bidding war among labels to sign Beck.

Eventually, he chose Geffen Records, who offered him terms that included an allowance for the release of independent albums while under contract. Of all the record labels to offer Beck a contract, Geffen offered him the least amount of money, but the greatest amount of creative freedom.

Beck comes from a very artistic family. He is the son of Bibbe Hansen, who integrated herself in the Andy Warhol's Factory scene at the age of thirteen with her lead role in Warhol's film, Prison. She also appeared in Warhol's Restaurant, 10 Beautiful Girls and 10 More Beautiful Girls.

Beck's father is the Canadian-born music arranger, composer and conductor David Campbell. David Campbell has been featured on many popular albums. He has worked with Michael Jackson, Bon Jovi, Mariah Carey, Elton John, Duran Duran, Justin Timberlake, Stevie Nicks, Eric Clapton, Rod Stewart, Sum 41, Linkin Park, Evanescence, Will Smith, Faith Hill and numerous other musicians. He has produced more than 400 gold and platinum albums.

Beck's maternal grandfather is the Fluxus artist Al Hansen one of the key figures in the Andy Warhol's Factory. Beck's maternal grandmother is the Bohemian poet Audrey Ostlin Hansen.

Beck's stepfather Sean Carrillo is a producer/director/ writer and would be best know for owning the Troy Cafe with Beck's mother Bibbe.

Beck is married Marissa Ribisi, the twin sister of actor Giovanni Ribisi.

One thing that kept coming up over and over again was that Beck is a Scientologist. Not only is he a member of the Church of Scientology his mother, father and stepfather are or at one time where all members of the Church. Not only that his wife and her brother also grew up in the Church of Scientology. It was weird to me to find out that Beck was raised as a scientologist but to find out that his wife was also raised that way seemed like a real anomaly.

I have heard some crazy things about Scientology, though for the most part it has always just seemed some sort of fanciful oddity and I never paid too much attention to it. Everything I had ever heard was too weird to believe. But reading about all these people who I admire artistically is causing me to be interested in finding out more.

No comments: