James Dean

Dean's Lament

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We all know James Dean was a talented actor who redefined the image of the American teenager, but was he a gifted percussionist too? This EP gives you the chance to find out for yourself; the tracks "Dean's Lament" and "Jungle Rhythms" feature the iconic star of Rebel Without a Cause playing the bongo drums in an informal jam session with flautist Bob Romeo, while actor Duke Mitchell adds his thoughts on the proceedings. As a bongo player, Dean had good timing but wasn't all that imaginative; then again, he was also an amateur doing this for kicks without a musical career in mind. This proto-beatnik material shows a little-known but hardly unexpected side of Dean's personality, and given the rarity of these recordings, serious James Dean fans will doubtless get a kick out of hearing the Hollywood outsider getting into the groove. In addition to the musical tracks, this disc also features a rare interview with Dean in which he talks about Rebel Without a Cause, and a telling excerpt from a highway safety film in which the young star talks about his love of racing and his understanding of the need for safety -- a bitter irony given Dean's death in an auto accident months later.

Track Listing - Disc 2

Title/Composer Performer Time
blue highlight denotes track pick