The Blues Hotel DocumentaryLast night I watched a film by Fred Kiko (of KXLU Demolisten Fame) called The Blues Hotel Documentary. Back in 1991 Fred shot some footage of infamous fellow KXLU DJ Chris Checkman, whose Blues Hotel show ran for nearly 20 years before its demise in 2006 (the show's demise, that is, not Chris's--I gather he is still alive) . If you've heard Demolisten anytime in the past few years, that's Chris's low, slow, despairing intro at the head of each show (you know--"that’s one big overblown sense of entitlement you got there, Whitey." That guy.)
Because the footage dates from the early '90's it doesn't cover Checkman's dismissal from the station, and although audio from his last broadcast is included in the DVD's extras, nothing is ever fully explained--was it just for being drunk and profane on the air? But anyway. Checkman is that guy who you knew in school who was way smarter and funnier than you and was destined to work at an obscure arthouse video rental store arguing about silent German Expressionist epics for the rest of time. He looks like a cross between ex-Monolators bass player Andy Bollas and Tiny Tim. He has integrity. Poise. Character. Fred's movie is mesmerizing and, if nothing else, serves as a time capsule of really, really unfortunate choices in clothes and hair.
You can watch the whole thing here. This is the trailer:
I wonder if this is still happening?