Wall of Voodoo broke up in 1988. But frontman Stan Ridgway figures that the 25th anniversary of the group’s “Call of the West” album — the one with the quirky hit single “Mexican Radio” — deserves a bit of commemoration.
So Ridgway and his band are playing a healthy dose of the record this summer — “Not the whole album,” he says, “but, like, eight of (the songs).
“It’s a good opportunity to kind of mark the time and see if we can collect the tribes and gather the troops and bring them into the tent, tie ’em to a chair and then start the slide show.
“It’s really nothing more than that. It’s just a way to say that we know it’s been that long, and the music marches on. It’s all about the music.”
Ridgway, who left the band in 1983 to start a solo career, definitely plays “Mexican Radio” every night, as fans would expect, to remind his audiences of the delights of barbecued iguana mentioned in the lyric. But he says his perspective on the song remains ambivalent, since he feels it was something of an anomaly to the rest of the “Call of the West” album and to the band’s catalog in general.
“I always considered ‘Mexican Radio’ to be a fun calling card that led you into a record that maybe had a little more meat on the bones than one might think from that one song,” explains Ridgway, 53, who’s working on his 11th solo album. “This is a way to remind people of that and tie it up and put it together in a way that celebrates what happened.”
Stan Ridgway performs Friday (August 10th) at the Magic Bag, 22920 Woodward Ave., Ferndale. Doors open at 8 p.m. Tickets are $20. Call (248) 544-3030 or visit www.themagicbag.com.