You Think You Really Know Me: The Gary Wilson Story Michael Wolk

The story of Gary Wilson’s You Think You Really Know Me has been well documented — in print, at least — since 2002, the date of the record’s reissuing. In 1977, a weird loner in a small town (Endicott, NY) recorded an oddball soul record in his parents’ basement. Something of a prodigy, his early compositions had impressed none other than John Cage (as a teenager, Wilson had sent him his work). At 24, Wilson had evolved into a jazzier, schizophrenic proto-Prince (if you’ll pardon the anachronism), one whose many "conquests” were actually neighbourhood girls that were terrified of him. It’s a great story and the record does it justice; it was only a matter of time before somebody picked up a camera and put visuals to it. Filmmaker Michael Wolk did a fine job with some great material: homemade art films (made by Wilson and his band of loonies, the Blind Dates, in the ’70s), interviews with a surprisingly subdued Wilson, his dad and former band-mates, street scenes of the sleepy Endicott and footage of Wilson’s first performance since the late ’70s. The art films are included in the special features and the DVD comes with a copy of You Think You Really Know Me on CD. This is a considerable bonus, as Motel Records (the label that found the long-forgotten Wilson working in a porn store in San Diego and reissued the record) has since folded. The Gary Wilson Story is worth watching, whether you’re a fan of his music or of off-the-wall human-interest stories. (Plexifilm)