Muse and Whirled Retort Archives 2006
The Muse and Whirled Retort - August, 2006
Friday, July 28, 2006
The Muse and Whirled Retort August, 2006
July 28, 2006
Volume VII Issue x
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Coming soon to CD Baby "American Storyteller" The DVD
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Enough of the crass commercial announcements. Lets get to the news.
- Welcome to the news letter - DR and I have been hauling ass this month. From Santa Cruz to Vancouver - I think we only had one night off! Now it's back from BC to DC for the Capital Fringe Fest, then several dates in eastern PA, The DC/Baltimore area, then a string of dates opening for Dan Bern down to Atlanta, SC, NC, FL, New Orleans, and Texas - all the way up through the heartland and Up State NY by Halloween. As always much of our booking gets done by YOU oh gentle reader - so if ya wanna see this show and we're coming near yer town - put on a house concert - we'll bring the bells and whistles.
- And now...
The Muse and Whirled Retort
Volume VII Issue x
It's that time of the month again. It may seem selfish of me, with all that is happening in the world to write on this topic this month. But it is where my heart is. So for those of you looking for a monthly missive on how we can blame George W Bush for everything form Lebanon to the current heat wave and subsequent power outages please tune in next month. Besides, I have been asked often and recently why I don't do any love songs, and why in seven years of putting this newsletter out every month I have never talked about romantic love.
I have loved many times in this life - and if the saying is true I am surely better of - for I have certainly lost each time. There were those relationships that lack of life's experience could not allow our paths to follow parallel for very long. As Einstein pointed out, all straight lines in this round universe must intersect - which also means that once they have intersected, they are from that point diverging. I guess that says a great deal about my love life.
Youth and age and ambition and apathy divide us like amoebas and galaxies.
In my case it was a desire to write. And while that desire did garner my first love song, - ironically a song about lost love - it is also that desire to live a creative life that drove us apart.
I released the song on a cassette called "Stranded Musician Needs Gas out of Town." It was duplicated on a boom box - plugged into the cigarette lighter of the car I lived in riding down the roads of this fair country trying to make a living as a street musician.
I lived in my car while she sought stability. I have not seen her since. I did Google her once and found only a family tree which showed when was married and had a child. I am happy for her.
My life's "Love Stories" are book ended with similar tales. On the near side are nature's ironies such as a disproportionate biological clock and the fact that God gave a 39 year old woman the same sex drive as a fifteen year old boy and a 39 year old man the same sex drive as a fifteen year old girl.
On this side of the bookend I find myself with the same choice as the other end. I could quit the road and be rewarded with family, community and stability. But, alas as I contemplate all of the angles of these choices, I find myself literally on a bus, which has driven on to a ferry. (Eat your song, Lyle Lovett, with your ridin' your pony on a boat - I am literally on a Greyhound, on a ship at this moment - contemplating the pros and cons of freedom's stability)
This ferry is headed from Victoria to Vancouver. It was in Victoria that I was married - many years ago. We formed a musical act, and sailed the asphalt highways with a dog named Jazz as we read John Steinbeck novels and watched "The United States of Generica" on a movie screen that flickered across our wind shield as we sat back in bucket seats separated only by a gear shift and a rear view mirror.
In Independence, Virginia I saw my love life splattered across the highwway like an elk hit by an eighteen wheeler. I had married the road on an Island and it left me in Independence, Virginia after we had played a gig at a place called Happy Endings. (I am not making this up) But, like Joe Ely said, "The road goes on forever and the party never ends."
We made a record together afterwards and even toured as a duo (not a couple.) We remain friends, I am happy for her. In fact, she sang with us a few nights ago in Portland, Oregon. Happy endings, indeed.
On the other side of these bookends - to the left side - when I was too young to know if it was love - was community college - my first live-in lover. She was my second address, the first after my mother's house. We moved in to an apartment adjacent to the first Waffle House - Waffle House #001. She was a sex addict and I was an alcoholic. I taught her to drink. She taught me to fuck. I will always love her for that. I hear she is a bartender with children in a prominent city on the eastern sea board. I am happy for her.
On the near side of the book ends -to the right side- stuff too recent to know if it is love - are a series of muses and tinderboxes that flash like the Hindenburg and leave me cowering in fear of all that is combustible, because love is a leaky gas line that leaves you dizzy, and I like to smoke cigarettes after sex, and if sparks fly - "Oh, the humanity!"
But the muses are far worse than the tinderboxes for the muse manages to reach into your chest and pull out your heart - arteries attached - and they lead you like the proverbial carrot on a stick. You have no choice but to follow or the arteries will become detached and you will surely die.
Life becomes a blur - in many ways you are not culpable for your own actions. You have no choice. You follow your heart through a darkened wood, and deserted street corners, abandoned parking lots and seedy motel rooms - These are not places that you would normally choose to be, but there you are - now so lost that when the muse finally gives you your heart back - which is what muses do - you are so lost you can no longer find your way back. She leaves you wishing you had only paid some sort of attention in anatomy class so you would have a semblance of a clue as to how to put the thing back in.
You stand - heart in hand - you can feel it throb in your fingertips - and you realize how alone you really are.
Literally your life is in your hands.
I pass over the personal hurricane that allowed me to avoid a very real hurricane, scattering my various body parts from New Orleans to Miami, Atlanta, DC, and Pittsburgh,. Perhaps it is selfish - but I would rather endure a hurricane created by Mother Nature than one formed by human nature. I am pretty sure Al Gore's film proved that Human Nature is much more vicious and destructive.
This hurricane I created myself, and New Orleans will never be the same. Then came the natural Hurricane and her pieces are as widely scattered as mine.
Now, I sit in an alchie bar in Vancouver wishing I had never taught Miss Community College to drink, and she had never taught me what a muse really is. And now my heart is no longer in my hands - it sits on the bar -my arteries wrapped around my wrists - one hand clinched to a tumbler full of Jamesons - the other to a pen scribbling on a napkin hoping that - this time - what the muse really had to show me was: an anatomy class.
DR and I are looking for work in Texas, Arkansas, Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Pennsylvania and up state New York.
Can you help?
See the dates below for specifics of what we are looking for - but if you have something near by , a house concert some event, a wedding, a bar mitzvah, please don't hesitate to drop us a note.
We are thinking of starting a new recording project. Yes folks a new CD out soon.
The brand new DVD "American Storyteller." will be available on line soon. Thanks to all you who have bought it so far.
DR is threatening to edit a new book of stories and poems from me - the main reason I have not put together one in years is well, in case you haven't noticed I mispelle everithing.
- T.H.A.N.K. .Y.O.U.!
Karen Kilroy, Anne Feeney, Wiktor,Terry and sons, Mike and Katie, KPFA, Tom Zajac, Shelly D'Amour, Tom Noddy, Jessica Simpson, Caroline and the Lavender Hill Gang, KPIG, Sleepy John, Tom Miller, Don Quixote's, Nikki Leeman, Donna, Hali, Randy and Tim, Roy Rebecca, Dave and all the High Sierra Folks, Kati Stanton and the reneworleans krewe, Brent Dennen, David Jacob Strain, Will and Jared, The Everybody Orchestra, Grizzly Radio, The cart, merch, sound and light crew at HSMF, Happy Camp, Jax, Harry "redwine" Levine - is it Gypsy or Dipsee?, Amy Morrison and the Back Bone campaign, Steffon Moody and family, Robert DeSpain, Moon and all the good folks the Matrix, Caryn Simmons, Amy Berlin, Cory, Bear and Brian at entertainment camp, Linda Divendorf, Carly D'Cart, Amber Llhamo, Energy Park, Tom Notti, The midnight show crew, Jim Evangelista, Firepie Mike, Scotty and the screen makers, Dave Lippman (but NOT George Shrub,) Tim Karamazov, Katie Mae, The terrific loyal fans in Sea!
ttle, Harry "redwine" Levine , Tina and AJ at Radio 8 Ball, KAOS, The Fertile Ground, Harry Blaisure, Adam and Kris, Stacey, Amanda Stark, Brian QTN, Isabella, Elise, Shawn, Sugar Beets Jeremy, MS Pizza, MS Studios, Sunny James, The Chatauqua Krewe, Ben and the crew at Siren's, Dr. Doug, Joe Brisken, Chris, Liana and Francis Kennedy, Beth Cubbage, All the great folks at the Victoria Folk Music Society, Utah Phillips, Patsy, Gordy, John and all the great folks at the Vancouver chapter of the IWW, Joey Only and the Outlaw Band, Dan Bern, Longevity John, Georgia, Margot, The drunk at that Vancouver alchie bar, Megan Cursons, The Comox Art Gallery, Big "Kokanee" Al, All the photographers who gave us pictures of earlier shows, Brent Hutchinson, the Schlepper Crew, Random Order, Sister Euclid, The amazing lighting and video crew at IFF, Shirley Myers, Tom Daly, Harry "redwine" Levine (again), Betsey Pornato, Stuart's, Local 1000, customs and immigration Canada - It was good for !
me really it was - but ummm... how come you don't return my phone calls?
, The Hindes, Charlotte Thistle, Daniel Flanigan, Tom Creviston and Diane Hays(in absentia), and Nick and Joanne.
We could not do this with out you.
N.o.w. .H.e.r.e.'s. .Da. ..Dates.