You have to hand it to Van Dyke Parks. The guy really knows how to make a music-scene entrance after 15 long years away.
The brilliant composer-arranger isn’t following his last “Orange Crate Art” effort with another album — he’s launching an unusual 7” single series on his own imprint, Bananastan Records. And he’s doing it in grand multimedia style.
There will be six separate singles coming out this year, in a style he’s christened “nouveau niche.” And they’ll be illustrated by six different modern artists.
First up is “Dreaming Of Paris”/”Wedding In Madagascar,” featuring a painting by Ed Ruscha, then “Wall Street”/”Money Is King,” boasting the work of “Maus” mastermind Art Spiegelman. And the other visual stylists are Sally Parks, Billy Edd Wheeler, Charles Ray and Frank Holmes, who did the cover of the Beach Boys’ “Smile” more than 40 years ago.
Also, Parks is issuing a compilation Sept. 20, “Arrangements By Van Dyke Parks,” collecting some of his best work with Ry Cooder, Little Feat, the late Lowell George and many others.
For more info, visit www.vandykeparks.com.