The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, June 12, 1984, SUMMER EDITION, Page Page 8, Image 8

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Cray brings blues to Lincoln
David TroubaOsSly Nebraskan
Robert Cray
By Christopher Hamel
Somewhere between Tacoma, Wash.,
and Europe lies a blues guitarist by the
name of Robert Cray. Somewhere bet
ween last week and this week Cray
visited Lincoln via the Zoo Bar. Within
that visit lies an interview with Cray,
during which he smoked filterless Camel
cigarettes and reflected on his life as a
"Nothin's ever easy," mused Cray,
"and I knew that playing this kind of
music wasn't going to be an easy thing."
Cray, who is best described as a
blues artist in search of a home in a top
40 world, said that finding success has
been a real struggle. "There were times
when all the money we had went into
the gas tank, and if there was any left
we divided it up for dinner."
"We used to sleep on the amps in the
back of the van, or on the floor of the
bars we played at, but now I can see a
light at the end of the tunnel," he said.
Indeed, somewhere between restless
nights spent on speakers and the ab
straction of a light at the end of a tun
nel lies success for Robert Cray. Cray
has released two albums in the U.S.;
"Who's Been Talkin" and "Bad Influ
ence." "Bad Influence" was ranked as
the number 3 album of 1983 by High
Fidelity Magazine, and is getting heavy
airplay in England.
"I like 'Bad Influence' the best, but
the challenge is to make the next
record better," said Cray.
Cray expects his next LP, which
remains unnamed, to be out in Janu
ary. Until then, he will travel with blues
master John Lee Hooker on a summer
European tour.
Somewhere between the day of his
birth and his European tour, Cray was
influenced. Cray said that he spent a
lot of time listening to his dad's Freddy
King records, and that he initiated
himself to the guitar early on in life.
"Everybody in my neighborhood got
guitars when the Beatles came out,
and I got one too. I played in rock 'n'
roll bands and stuff like that 'til the
end of high school," he said.
After high school, Cray started get
ting into rhythm and blues and in
1974 he started the band he is still
"When a guy plays with the same
band for a long time you really get to
know where each other is going. It
leaves lots of room for improvisation,"
he said. "You need that chance to
express yourself, and every night the
solo i3 different."
Cray's devotion to improvisational
performing ha3 left him as one who
refuses to conform to any "commercial
thing." He said that he likes not having
to do any music that he doesn't like.
"It's the only way to really be happy,"
he said.
Although Cray is billed as a rhythm
and blues artist he doesn't feel that he
can actually be categorized. "Who
knows, maybe some day 111 do a coun
try tune. You can expect anything."
Words spoken in truth. Cray exem
plified the traits of his versatility when
he played the Zoo Bar Tuesday even
ing. His reverberating guitar felt itself
beyond the perimeters of traditional
rhythm and blues, almost to the point
that one notices the Beatle influence.
Slightly hunched over his Stratocas
ter, Cray resembled a Van Goghian
painter in the midst of an expression
istic piece, save one point; the palette
from which Robert Cray drew his blues
and grays was his own soul.
Somewhere between a pensive drag
on a cigarette and the final swallow of
a bottle of beer, lie a few simple words
spoken by Robert Cray which, in es
sence, sum up his existence as a musi
cian. "I'm a guy," Cray said, "who's just
having fun. That's all."
New Star Trek movie will please Trelclde
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Soft-core Star Trek fans or occasional re-run
watchers will like the new Star Trek III movie The
Search for Spock." Others, who don't fall into these
categories will more than likely turn up their noses
in lack of appreciation. The real hard-core Trekkies
may even feel betrayed, simply because thi3 movie is
really nothing more than a high budget, high tech
continuation of the original TV-episodes.
When Spock died in the last Star Trek movie,
making another Star Trek movie seemed impossible.
Things just wouldn't be the same around the Enter
prise without his pointy ears and logic. The creators
of Star Trek HI must have felt the same way, because
Spock makes a grand resurrection with a little help
from his friends and some Vulcan mysticism.
The new movie picks up where the last one left off:
the Enterprise is coming home to Earth after saving
the Genesis project. Kirk, Scotty,Uhura, Sulu, Chekov
and Bones are all a little older, and a lot more can
tankerous than they used to be. Some of the film's
best moments are the one-liners that are so typical
of the crew's personalities. The plot andthe charac
ter interactions still depend on the criticism of
Kirk's human emotions and the calculation of Vulcan
logic just like they used to in the old TV series. The
characters have always been the strengtn m Star
Trek, and this movie is no exception.
Remembering the series is what makes Spock's
final mind meld to Bones so outrageous and wond
erful Bones finally gets what he deserves after all his
dramatic moral and ethical speeches that were
directed at everyone but himself.
Everyone, including Bones, thinks that he is losing
his mind when little signs of Spock's thoughts and
mannerisms begin to show through. McCoy starts to
think logically, and occasionally he speaks in Spock's
voice. He even gives the Vulcan pinch a try in a very
clumsy, human way.
Kirk makes incredible sacrifices in order to reu
nite Spock with his body. He does a few things that
seem out of character for the old captain of the
It seems as if the whole crew has adopted some
"bad" habits just to draw the movie crowds in. Like
using profanity and rebelling against the Federation
at every turn. There is a bar scene similar to that of
"Star Wars" and an "American Werewolve in London"
effect when Spock's face crackles and changes, but
enough of the characters' conviction carries the
movie through.
The ending is a bit of a letdown. I had higher
expectations after remerpbering some of the great
clinchers from the real Star Trek shows. But it was
worth a bad ending just to see the whole gang
together one more time. The possibility of a Star
Trek IV is indicated with "The adventure conti
nues . . ." but let's hope that Star Trek fans can
remember the adventure in their own minds and
not on the screen.
Daily Nebraska!
Tuesday, Juno 1Z 1934