Captain Beefheart in the High Desert

Captain Beefheart and his Magic Band perform the title track from his twelfth studio album “Ice Cream for Crow” in the High Desert, California, in 1982. The album was Don Van Vliet’s final release as Captain Beefheart before retiring from music to devote himself to painting. It’s reported that the video, directed by Van Vliet with cinematography by Daniel Pearl (and, according to the credits, assisted by an “ecology officer” named Sir Tumbleweed) was rejected by MTV for being “too weird.” Maybe appropriate, then, that it had its first public showing at the Museum of Modern Art in the “PERFORMANCE VIDEO” exhibition of 1982. The exhibition also included his 1971 commercial for “Lick My Decals Off, Baby,” and you can download the press release for it here.