Betty Butcher to resume Cori Dials identity in Washington DC Fall, 2007.

Cori Dials is curled up in a window sill in Steve Jones midtown studio on a Sunday afternoon in early September. Steve's simple but introspective idea was to photograph a natural model in natural light. It's the last photo Steve will probably take of Cori for some time and it suits the mood of a subject who is putting something behind her. It was not Steve or Cori's intent, but I personally consider this foto to be the last Fingers Like Saturn 'band foto' even though we are no longer in the picture.

I formed FINGERS LIKE SATURN as a recording project with several goals. A revisiting of band-lore with old and new faces. A chance for me to write songs that someone else would sing - in the same way that George wrote songs that I sang in the ROCKROACHES. And for this new singer to be someone whom I met at Sun Studio - and I first collaborated with in film, (an image that Cori has been humbly uncomfortable with since day one), it's more than a reward, it's a chapter; some sort of pure payola that I can never repay.

But I can try.

Cori Dials is a working class mother who looks like twilight and sings like a tornado. While living in Bartlett (a mere suburb of Memphis) Cori basically conquered several pop culture fronts emanating from Midtown Memphis (the heart of the punk rock scene) - as well as the downtown print scene. I'm sure the same will be true for her in DC. WIthout her, FINGERS LIKE SATURN would have no vocal point; no front person. no reason to exist for the Western Eye. Don't get me wrong, we ALL look damn good - but Cori comes across in FINGERS like King Kong swatting airplanes.

Glam bam thank you mam. Twas, Beauty killed the Beast? No, Beauty kept the Beast alive.

I stand inside the skin of my pop culture theories; to live within them is life-changing, and sometimes not for the better. There's nothing hollow about what I believe in, you just can't see what I see. My god is made of celluloid, newsprint and vinyl. Call it obsessed if you will, but this kind of obsession, an artist can wait all his life for. Some never grasp one single epiphany because they are caught up in frustrations and trivialites.

Not me, brother.
Playing at the old Antenna and recording at Sun Studio and taking pictures at the Overton Park Shell was based on Memphis as HOLY GROUND. Not just looking at old pictures and longing for a time when Pop Culture was alive, but attempting new involvement with old shapes. That is the fundamental concept of FINGERS LIKE SATURN, not Bowie or Elvis worship. FINGERS LIKE SATURN has been coming for a long time, and thank heaven we had JUST ENOUGH TIME to record those precious 13 songs before we lovingly called it quits; a separation of church and state. The timing was good and the Muse is moving on.

Long Live Betty Butcher.

Knowing these friends in the context of a Memphis rock and roll band and having Cori sing my songs was more than beautiful because 'beauty' is just a concept created by Man. Cori saw it as a new challenge, a new experience and without those you might as well phone the Mortician. FINGERS LIKE SATURN was a necessary pop fix for me as I await other things. We are ALL awaiting Other things.

These 13 songs, this ARTIFACT in the shape of a record called "SOMETHING ALIEN" that FINGERS LIKE SATURN leaves behind will be just as important as one of my movies or comic books, a title with obscure personal reference, but also about Bowie and Elvis's physical presence in the city's green Overton Park.

No big deal, just gods on earth. Eighteen years apart.

Everything Happens For A Reason. Steve Jones incredible foto enlivens my melancholy imagination. It says things we may not get to say - or choose not too. The gig is up and our singer is gone. Alas, all is not lost. Our dear underground must yet decide if all this hand-ringing even sounds good in a living room at midnight. Susie keeps asking when is the record release party. Maybe next summer you'll hear our new long playing record on a volunteer radio station in your town. Ask for a clear day and no interference.

I think we're gonna form a new band and write a song about you.

Love and Curses,

Thin White Trash
Fingers Like Saturn
September 3, 2007

foto by Steve Jones
top foto by Jonathan Postal