Sir Happy Krimble - A few notes about Billy James and Ant-Bee.
Very few artists in the history of music have reached the depths of obscurity
as Billy James did. His reign over the "Pop Culture" lasted from Nov.
1967 to Dec. 1967. Within that month his music would change the course of
history as he knew it.
Who is - who was Billy James? He was born in New York City in a log
cabin, which he helped his father build. In his early teens he ran with a
gang, vandalized vender machines and work of all learned to play the
accordian. Also, it was during these years he began his long addiction with
In a rare 1968 interview, he openly admitted to looking at 1000 Dali painting
in one sitting. He also attributes his self-imposed reclusiveness as a direct
result of his surreal experimentations.
No one knows the exact story of what went on during those magical recording
sessions of Ant-Bee - however, a lot of speculation has been made.
Let's face it, these recordings have been lost for over 20 years!
Eating Chocolate Cake in the Bath: This song is said to be the result
of his Bathtub Protests. For 3 weeks he ate chocolate cake while taking a
bath. To this day, no one is sure what these protests were for.
Black and White Cat, Black and White Cake: This song was said to be
inspired by a B movie filmed in 1976, making the song even stranger since it
was recorded in 1967.
Silly Fat Fingers: Syd Barrett was once quoted as saying that this song
was very odd.
The Green Gin: This song was conceived during his trip to India and
studies with the Maharishi. Unfortunately, it was too late when he discovered
he had mistaken the famous Guru with the famous French chef Mahershey Laroux.
Thus, instead of discovering truth and enlightenment, he learned how to bake a
The Wrong at Once (Has Gone): This song sort of sums up his beliefs on
love, sex, religion, politics, drugs, food, etc., sort of.
Several unfortunate incidents caused this pioneering project to be shelved for
20 years. Several record producers were quoted saying the music was ahead of
its time, and for Billy James to come back again in 20 years and
they'll discuss it then. By this time his own surrealistic habit was wearing
thin. During a Smothers Brothers show, at the Whiskey-A-Go-Go in
Hollywood, he was arrested for wearing a Warhol on his head. That incident was
the final straw that broke the artist's spirit. Billy James was not
heard from again - until now.