Today's mp3 is the most spectacularly awful music I've heard in a while, a kitsch epic. But there's more to it then just that.
That's because today's music is by the infamous Tony Alamo, in the news yet again, this time for kiddie porn. The FBI raided his Arkansas compound. Sure, he's in the South now, but I remember when we had him here in Los Angeles. I discovered one of his tracts on a school bulletin board over 20 years ago and have been following the man's exploits ever since.
The tract was a conspiracy theorist's wet dream, claiming that the Catholic Church controlled all the major media outlets, and told every big business and politician what to do. As someone raised as a Catholic, I was outraged! What! I exclaimed, Where's my major tv network or magazine that I can control?!? All the years we spent on parochial school, going to church every Sunday, giving who knows how much money to the collection basket - why weren't we in on the conspiracy? Not fair!
Alamo used child labor to make ugly jackets for rich idiots, was wanted on tax charges, and fled town, leading the FBI on a cross-country chase that, at one point included stealing his dead wife's body from a tomb and carrying it with him while still on the lamb!
Like so many religious/cult leaders, he makes music, much of it country, with gospel-style vocals, all dominated by Alamo's warbly baritone. Doesn't get much better then this tune, which might be a more recent recording, judging by his aging voice. He bellows out the lyrics like a drunk hollering "Wind Beneath My Wings" at a karaoke bar, while the increasingly bombastic music overwhelms the listener, like a Phil Spector production for the deranged.
Tony Alamo: My Tribute - To God Be The Glory
His website is a monument to paranoid madness. A supposed Jesuit oath claims that, in their war against non-Catholics, Jesuit priests are sworn to '...hang, burn, waste, boil, flay, strangle, and bury alive these infamous heretics; rip up the stomachs and wombs of their women, and crush their infants' heads against the walls," and an interview with a mafioso claims that "Bush, the Pope and other top Vatican and U.S. government leaders had prior knowledge and help organize 9/11...to get their hands on all the gold that was hidden below in the Twin Towers." Golly! No wonder the powers that be are always persecuting Pastor Alamo.