Michael Ciravolo, the wizard behind the curtain of Beauty in Chaos which is, what I consider, one of the most comprehensive and diverse multi-artist projects to date, has just released the new video for the T-Rex cover track titled ’20th Century Boy’ featuring Wayne Hussey of The Mission and The Sisters of Mercy, wait for it, none other than Rolan Bolan, son of the original artist Marc Bolan. That makes this a landmark, of sorts, as a son pays homage to his father in the best way possible; by carrying the torch. Rolan has a tremendous voice and massive musical abilities (I highly recommend checking out his YouTube channel HERE for a taste of his original work).
In this rendition of the T-Rex classic, we find genres colliding with Michael, Wayne, and Rolan within a melting pot that makes everything taste good and leaves everyone wanting more. That is the way good music should always be. That’s what music is. It’s not onlybeauty in chaos’ but diversity in chaos as well. Diversity lies between beauty and chaos and can attribute to both and, when done perfectly, you not only have the beauty within the chaos but a fond memory as well.
The video is a gratifying visual representation of the song as well. I imagine this song was a real pleasure to work on and be a part of. Just look at the lineup. In addition to Wayne and Rolan, you have Tish Ciravolo (Daisy Rock Guitars) and producer Michael Rozon joining in on the rhythm section as well. The video is a celebration of music, of life, of anything you wish to celebrate. It adds an aspect to the track that doesn’t need mentioning but certainly deserves highlighting and that is comradery. That is what it takes to not only make a song like ’20th Century Boy’ sing but soar.
You can get the album titled ‘Beauty Re-Envisioned’ as well as the original album ‘Finding Beauty in Chaos’ featuring this version as well as other beautiful and chaotic tracks HERE (more links below).
We also had the chance to ask Michael a few questions about this version of ’20th Century Boy’. Here they are!
How did you get Rolan Bolan to cover a song by his father and what kind of differences did he suggest within the song?
I went through a few friends of friends to get his phone number. When I first spoke to him on the phone, I could tell he was a bit apprehensive, but thankfully he agreed to meet with me! We seemed to hit it off well over lunch and I think by the end he felt I was genuine in my intentions to do his Dad’s song and legacy justice. He later told me he didn’t hate the version we did with Al! As soon as Rolan said yes, Michael Rozon and I set out to record a new version of the song as I had described to Rolan. When he came to SAINTinLA studio a few weeks later, we had the track 95% complete and he thought it was slammin’!
How was it like involving both Rolan and Wayne Hussey into a single track with their different music styles?
I was another one of those ‘surreal’ moments that I go on about with BIC! Wayne has always been one of not only my favorite singers but also guitarist so I was thrilled when he said he wanted to play guitar on the track. He also adds some really great harmony vocals with Rolan, and a really cool ‘sisters-esque’ solo on the outro that I wish would have been louder in the mix! I am certainly a big T. Rex fan, and Marc Bolan was a key reason I wanted to play electric guitar, but Wayne is a MASSIVE fan. No way was he not going to be part of this! He was in the middle of finishing ‘Salad Daze’ but made the time to play and sing! I think Rolan brings a really unique take on the track vocally, after all, he IS a Bolan! He brings his Dad’s swagger and his Mom’s (singer Gloria Jones) soulfulness to the track. I think he had a great time doing both the recording and the video… and I sincerely hope it spurs him to make more music. I think he has been a bit disillusioned with the music industry. I know his Mom and Dad both cast big shadows, but Rolan is a talented guy. I know the experience in doing this is something that Wayne nor I will ever forget.
What do you think Marc Bolan would think if he heard your version of his song with his son taking the reigns as singer?
Wow … I certainly would like to think he would love the spirit and the fun rock n’ roll element we tried to bring to the song and the video. I don’t pretend to have known the man … but being a Dad myself, I think Marc would be proud of how his son made his song, which to me is one of the greatest rock ‘n roll songs of all time … his own. One of the best moments of all of this was Rolan thanking me for doing this with him … and that his Dad would have liked it. Again, I hope the genuine fun and the love of the song and the man comes through in both!
Here is some exclusive behind-the-scenes footage!
Here is a scene from the Jammer Direct produced documentary on the Beauty in Chaos project titled ‘Behind the Beauty: Remixing the Chaos’ featuring Rolan Bolan and Wayne Hussey discussing their involvement in the making of ’20th Century Boy’.
Watch the entire documentary at these locations:
- Amazon Prime US
- Amazon Prime UK
- Jammer Direct
- Beauty in Chaos Official Youtube
- Jammer Direct Roku Channel
- IQIYI (China)
- IMDb Page
About Beauty in Chaos & ’20th Century Boy’
LA-based collective Beauty in Chaos presents their new single ’20th Century Boy’ feat. Rolan Bolan and Wayne Hussey, with a fun-filled retro-inspired video, created by Industrialism Films and directed by Vicente Cordero. Here Bolan honoring the legacy of his father Marc Bolan, along with The Mission’s main-man and Beauty in Chaos mastermind Michael Ciravolo.
This rendition of the T. Rex original definitely sounds more like T.Rex than the industrial-fueled version featuring Ministry’s Al Jourgensen that appears on Beauty In Chaos’s debut ‘Finding Beauty in Chaos’.
The band in the video is comprised of Rolan Bolan on lead vocals, Wayne Hussey on harmony vocals and electric guitar, Michael Ciravolo on electric guitar and backing vocals, Tish Ciravolo on bass, Michael Rozon on drums, and Scarlett Perry on piano.
“Once Rolan (son of Marc Bolan and singer Gloria Jones) agreed to be part of this, I wanted to recut the track with much more of the sultry swagger from the original. We added a growly sax and some cool Mott the Hoople meets New Orleans honky-tonk piano to enhance the vibe we wanted. I probably would not be playing electric guitar if it was not for Marc Bolan. This is my big thank you … and I have been blessed to be able to enlist some great company to help me say it,” says Michael Ciravolo.
“Getting to record and perform this song with Marc’s son and Wayne Hussey is one of those oft-mentioned surreal moments in BIC.”
Rolan Bolan explains his involvement in the project: “When Michael came to me about Beauty In Chaos and doing ‘20th Century Boy’ , I first thought ‘here we go again, another T. Rex cover, but once I heard the track and talked with him about the love and respect he has for my father’s music it just made sense. It was great timing for me as I was just beginning to get back into making music and we just clicked in the studio. My Dad was so influential to so many, and at times it’s been hard for me to understand what that really means. I’m really proud of what we’ve done here and I believe he would be too.”
“It is, of course, a huge pleasure to be playing guitar and singing on ‘20th Century Boy’, one of Marc Bolan’s best-known songs. And a transcendent honor to be doing so behind Rolan Bolan, Marc’s son. When Michael Ciravolo told me that Rolan was going to be involved I virtually begged Michael to let me be involved in this project. Bless him, despite being more than capable of handling all the guitar parts himself Michael did deign to let me have a strum, and a yodel, along. There’s another one off my bucket list! Cheers, Michael. And Rolan,” says Wayne Hussey.
Hussey’s love for T. Rex and Marc Bolan runs deep, as detailed in his recently released ‘Salad Daze’ autobiography, out now via Omnibus Press.
“I was reborn. It was a Thursday evening, early January 1972, getting on for 8 pm. I was 13 going on 14 years old. That evening the course of my life was changed irrevocably forever. I saw my destiny in a blinding flash of glitter, a touch of mascara and dark curls. From that moment I knew I was pre-ordained. I was gonna be a rock star. Well, somebody has to be, don’t they, so why not me?
I had just watched Marc Bolan and T. Rex dazzle the nation on the institutional British TV show, Top Of The Pops. Miming to ‘Telegram Sam’, the new number-one single in the charts, Bolan pranced and preened across our TV screens and straight into the hearts of teens, dividing the generations for perhaps the first time since The Beatles had done so almost ten years before.
That was it for me. In one fell swoop, I no longer wanted to be Kevin Keegan, I wanted to be Marc Bolan. Bolan had better hair than Keegan and was far prettier. It looked like a really good job to me, playing guitar and singing, being on TV and being screamed at by girls. And even some boys. And a darn sight more agreeable and easier than all the dedication, training and physical exercise required to become a professional footballer.
Switching allegiances as easy as finding sand in a desert down came my posters of Keegan, Ray Clemence, Tommy Smith (!), et al and up went center page pull-outs from Jackie and Disco 45 of dear beloved Marc. Marc Bolan was my first and, still to this day, an enduring love.
I was T. Rex crazy and, like a million other kids, I would pose in front of the mirror with a tennis racket, pretending to play guitar while singing along to Bolan. The first LP I ever bought was Electric Warrior, maybe a month or two later after saving up enough money from my paper round wages. Electric Warrior is a fantastic album and it’s still high on my list of best albums ever. I love the earthiness of its sound, the funkiness, the otherworldly mystical lyrics, the simplicity of the songs, the instrumentation, the guitar playing, the backing vocals of Howard Kaylan and Mark Volman (better known as The Turtles), but most of all, it’s that voice, that extraordinarily fey, quivering, tactile Bolan voice that just oozes sexual exuberance.”
Beauty in Chaos’ also involves numerous other music luminaries, including Simon Gallup (The Cure), Al Jourgensen (Ministry), Ashton Nyte (The Awakening), Robin Zander (Cheap Trick), Pete Parada (The Offspring), dUg Pinnick (Kings X), ICE-T (Body Count), producer Tim Palmer, guitar icon Zakk Wylde, Kevin Haskins (Bauhaus, Love & Rockets), Michael Aston (Gene Loves Jezebel), Michael Anthony (Van Halen), Paul Wiley (Marilyn Manson), Dirk Doucette (Gene Loves Jezebel), Pando (A Flock of Seagulls), Evi Vine, Johnny Indovina (Human Drama), Danny Lohner (Nine Inch Nails, Marilyn Manson), Betsy Martin (Caterwaul / Purr Machine), Marc Danzeisen (The Riverdogs), Kevin Kipnis (Purr Machine / Kommunity FK), Rudy Matchinga (Red Scare), and Tish Ciravolo (StunGun/ Daisy Rock Guitars).
‘Beauty Re-Envisioned’ is available on deluxe CD, limited-edition heavy-weight colored vinyl, and digitally, with a Spotify version to appear later. CDs and vinyl can be ordered directly from Beauty in Chaos HERE. Apart from the 14 core tracks, orders placed via the website also come with 11 bonus remixes.
Rolan Bolan: lead vocals
Wayne Hussey: harmony vocals and electric guitar
Michael Ciravolo: electric guitar
Andy Cousin: bass
Michael Rozon: drums
Zach Landreneau: piano
Calvin Schultz: saxophone
Additional backing vocals by Ashton Nyte and Angela Carole Brown
Recorded, mixed and produced by Michael Rozon
Video by Industrialism Films
Directed by Vicente Cordero
Filmed at Tiger Lab Studios, Van Nuys CA
Hair and Makeup by Nicole and Sophia Ciravolo
Staging by Prop Heaven
“Stunning musical and, in particular, six-string intricacy that mixes Ciravolo’s love of rock, pop, post-punk, goth, new wave, and other styles and wraps it all in layers of lush, ringing, occasionally grimy and often heavily effected guitars”
– Guitar World
“Guitarist Michael Ciravolo assembled an all-star cast for his moody hard-hitting album… Intense”
– Rolling Stone
“Both records offer a rich sonic palette of unabashed gothic rock and post-punk romanticism, that reverberates through the varied inputs of a melange of musicians who are masters of their craft”
“True evolution – just hits you like a sucker punch…. mesmerized and captivated”
“A new gothic rock project… hauntingly heavy and beautiful”
– LA Weekly