All Avant-Garde All The Time - UbuWeb Podcast #9: The Sounds of the UK from the 1960s To Yesterday

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Produced by The Poetry Foundation, UbuWeb is pleased to announce the latest in its podcast series, focusing on a dozen of Ubu's hidden treasures, highlighting audio works that you really should know about about but most likely don't. With this podcast, we continue our series focusing on the sounds of different regions. Here the focus is on the avant-garde language-based audio coming out of the UK. Beginning with Bob Cobbing and making our way through the the swinging London scene of the 60s, and the political / punk work of the 70s, and ending up with the electronics and samples of today, we cut a path through the London (and beyond) underground. Featured here are works by Bob Cobbing, Neil Mills, Lily Greenham, Cornelius Cardew, Christopher Logue, Richard Long, Art & Language + The Red Krayloa, Furious Pig, Momus, People Like Us, and Caroline Bergvall. You can subscribe to our podcast here.

Originally Published: July 23rd, 2009

Kenneth Goldsmith's writing has been called some of the most "exhaustive and beautiful collage work yet produced in poetry" by Publishers Weekly. Goldsmith is the author of eight books of poetry, founding editor of the online archive UbuWeb (, and the editor I'll Be Your Mirror: The Selected Andy Warhol...

  1. July 23, 2009
     Kent Johnson

    If this is a post about the UK avant-garde, a very interesting topic, I don't understand why Kenny Goldsmith and partner are displaying their bottoms in the photo?\r


  2. July 23, 2009

    John and Yoko.

  3. July 23, 2009
     Kent Johnson

    Oh, come on, that's not John Lennon! It's clearly Kenny Goldsmith.

  4. July 23, 2009

    I know.

  5. July 23, 2009
     Kent Johnson

    OK, so let me ask again: Why is Kenny goldsmith displaying his bottom (or his head on the naked body of John Lennon) in a post about the UK avant-garde?\r

    One begins to wonder about market forces...\r


  6. July 23, 2009

    For fun?

  7. July 23, 2009
     Kent Johnson

    >"for fun?"\r

    Yes, of course, I should have gotten the fun.\r

    Long live the post-neo-avant-garde.

  8. July 23, 2009
     Henry Gould

    Because neither of them know how to sing or play guitar?

  9. July 23, 2009
     John Oliver Simon

    Cult of personality celebrating the non-existence of the self...

  10. July 23, 2009
     Kent Johnson

    Someone just wrote me to say that it's really Jeff Koons's bottom, photoshopped!\r

    Now *that* would be some crazy sublimity. \r

    And here I thought we could start theorizing Conceptual Poetry via Burger, with a little bit of Buchloh thrown-in to soften the spanking...\r


  11. July 24, 2009
     Andy Dancer

    Urm, maybe because Goldsmith hosts the podcast and because the woman -- Vicki Bennett aka People Like Us -- is featured in the podcast? And why naked? Because it's a parody of the John and Yoko wedding album. All very simple answers.

  12. July 24, 2009
     Gerardo Figueroa

    loved the photoquote!\r
    standing applause, guys!

  13. July 25, 2009
     Kent Johnson

    "Slow Poetry: Recipe for a New Avant-Garde?"\r

    Well, the first paragraph of the article concludes with this jaw-dropper of a claim:\r

    "Flarf has laid claim to the critique of late capitalism and postmodern culture advanced by 20th century Language Poetry and Critical Theory."\r

    But the rest of this piece in today's Buffalo News, about the growing influence of "Slow Poetry," is quite good. I didn't know (see article) that Dale Smith's idea-in-process has had such an impact among younger poets at SUNY/ Buffalo.\r\r


  14. July 27, 2009

    Oh come one Kent, don't pretend you wouldn't be tempted to post a picture of your butt if you were a Harriet blogger. I mean, it's practically a tradition.\r

    Come one everyone, butt posts all around.