These Memories Can't Wait

A re-release reopens old wounds for the Talking Heads

"Why not?" Frantz says. "The movie makes him look fantastic, and he needs that. Wouldn't you agree? That was the idea, his and Jonathan Demme's, from the very beginning. I'm not knocking David's performance, but it's all directed to make him look good. Still, he's no Ricky Martin...." He trails off, laughing slightly. See, there he goes again, still holding that grudge. One would think that would all be water under the bridge, if not water long evaporated, by now. Frantz and Weymouth may not have thrived in the post-Heads era, but they haven't suffered, either; indeed Mariah Carey's use of the Tom Tom Club's "Genius of Love" in her top-of-the-pops song "Fantasy" has been worth a fistful of nice royalty checks. ("Genius of Love" and its sequel, "Pleasure of Love," rank among the most sampled of songs, appearing in tracks by LL Cool J, Ziggy Marley, and, of course, Puff Daddy.) And Harrison has carved out a rather lucrative career as a producer for bands such as Live, The Verve Pipe, Rusted Root; he also operates his own Website, www.garageband.com, which is sort of an Internet battle-of-the-bands venue.

But maybe good memories die hard. Maybe it's just impossible sometimes to let go of a brilliant yesterday, when the world was full of possibilities, and the music seemed to offer something mysterious and remarkable every time the four of them stepped into a room together. For that who can blame Chris Frantz? For him, the day the Heads died was the day he lost a little bit of himself.

Yet -- and here's the strange part -- even now he holds out a bit of hope that, some day the band will get together one more time. Maybe it will happen at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremonies; the hall recently called and asked, if so honored, whether the Talking Heads would appear and perform. Frantz and Weymouth said they would love to: "We'll play 'Psycho Killer,' whatever," Frantz says. But on the same day as this interview, Byrne appeared on salon.com quashing such talk. "Once I would probably do it," he said. "But now, I don't think so." Byrne compares a reunion to a couple getting back together only so others can relive their pain.

There is something in Frantz's voice that says he would not mind a little extra hurt. It's better than nothing at all.

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