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Art Pepper Lives Again on YouTube

If you didn't hear the NPR broadcast last week, Art Pepper's 63-year-old widow Laurie -- who co-authored the late saxophonist's infamous autobio of self-destruction Straight Life -- has been engaging in a bit of guerrilla filmmaking. Frustrated by numerous attempts to get the life of her husband told through the normal Hollywood biopic channels, she enrolled in a few courses on video editing and animation and then on her own home computer began to construct My Straight Life, a trilogy of hourlong films that owe more to Jonathan Caouette's Tarnation or even Todd Hayne's's recent I'm Not There in their surreal, hallucinatory and thoroughly deconstructive takes on their complicated subjects.

artpepper.jpg

[Photo of Art Pepper by William Claxton]

If you haven't checked out the clips on You Tube, they're pretty weird and wonderful. If a more linear narrative is required, check out Don McGlynn's film Art Pepper: Notes from a Jazz Survivor.

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