Two Takes on the One Man Band

May 20, 2009 · Print This Article

Sid Laverents died of pneumonia on May 6th at the age of 100. Who was Sid Laverents, you ask? From his New York Times obituary:

Mr. Laverents was a jack of many trades, a perpetual self-inventor. He played a dozen instruments and supported himself through the Depression as a vaudevillian one-man band; he was also a sheet metal worker who helped build World War II airplanes, a self-published writer, a Fuller Brush salesman, a sign painter, a carpenter and an aircraft engineer.

But he was best known for the more than 20 movies he made from 1959 until his death, as a member of the San Diego Amateur Moviemakers Club. They included nature films ( one about snails, filmed in his backyard), goofy comedies ( “It Sudses and Sudses and Sudses,” a “Sorcerer’s Apprentice”-like tale about canisters of shaving cream run amok in the bathroom) and deadpan autobiographical stories, including “The Sid Saga,” a four-part look at his own life, completed in his 80s.

Laverents’ movie Multiple Sidosis was included in the National Film Registry in 2000, when Laverents was 92. You can watch it, below. But be forwarned, things don’t start rockin’ until halfway through the movie.

This brought to mind another, contemporary musician, Theresa Andersson, who is something of a one-woman band herself, in the true old-fashioned sense of the term. (Via Booooooom!).

I don’t know — I’m just so freakin’ charmed by them both. May the one man (ahem, person) band live on.

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