Sunday, November 25, 2007

More self-absorbed musings!

I've been posting a lot lately, huh? I have a lot of head-junk to clear out, so just bear with me.

First of all, since lately we've been on the subject of the things I love without reservation or explanation, I want to talk about country music from the late 80's to the mid 90's or so. La Fab mentioned in a comment that she liked the mid 90's country movement, but frankly I am not in touch with what was going on after 1994 or so, until Whiskeytown and Uncle Tupelo started fetishizing Bill Monroe. (This might actually be what she's talking about). Nope, I'm actually talking not-nostalgic, non-ironic country music from that era. See, I was in my formative years, musically speaking, then, and I was living in an area of Colorado that is best described as rural. Country music surrounded me. Some of it was just plain awful, unlistenable pop. And some of it was fairly innocuous. And some of it is burned into my brain. Specifically, these songs:

1)Just Call Me Lonesome by Radney Foster. I talk a good game about loving the Cash and I can hold a conversation about Kenny Rogers, Dolly Parton, or George Jones, but this is my all time favorite country and western song not recorded by Patsy Cline or Hank Williams. It's a little honky-tonk, a little Texas Swing, a lot perfect. Also on this album (DelRio, Texas, 1959, if anyone cares) is a gem called Lousiana Blue, which contains the line,"where the muddy bayous run just as black as Coca-Cola." The full phrase Coca-Cola is something you hear only in certain parts of the country, and it is way more evocative of Louisiana to me than countless other poetic turns of phrase I've heard.

2)I Feel Lucky by Mary Chapin Carpenter. This is actually a rock and roll song cleverly disguised as a country song, repackaged for a different audience. It's got a really bluesy guitar, boogie-woogie piano, and some tambourine breakdown. Plus, she name-checks Lyle Lovett and Dwight Yoakam as objects of attraction. Yes, the two goofiest dudes in music. And she talks about frozen burritos. I think I would probably like to have beers with this lady. The other winner from this album is Passionate Kisses, written by Lucinda Williams. If you don't know about her, you should. It was my favorite love song for a long time.

3)Is There Life Out There by Reba McEntire. Okay, the song leaves me a little cold, but the video features Huey Lewis as her husband. HUEY LEWIS, my friends. And I don't care what you say, Sports is a great fucking album.

4)Chattahoochee by Alan Jackson I don't know what it is about this song. I once waited until 1:00 in the morning to watch this man perform. This was the only song of his I knew, or even still know, and it was worth every minute. I learned to two step to this song.

Can we go back to Huey Lewis and the News for a minute? Organ in Hip to be Square. Pure genius.

Okay, now that that is out of the way, I want to say that I was thinking about country music in part because I had a weird little thing happen this week, and I ended up crying over a boy I couldn't have instead of one who was breaking my heart, leaving me defenseless and frustrated that I was upset over the things that never happened. It felt like high school all over again, and after spending a few hours listening to the Replacements, I moved on to the good stuff. In this case the country. Except, confessionally, I did not listen to that Reba McEntire song. I just threw that in so I could talk about Huey Lewis.


  1. Love Huey Lewis. I'm more scared of hairy men now than I was back then.

    Also, Chatahoochee by Alan Jackson is a fantastic song, and I can recite the entire thing by heart at any given moment. Is he still hot? Or was it because I was sixteen?

  2. The #2 Alan Jackson for me is Don't Rock the Jukebox. Damn, that song is GOOD RADIO. There's steel guitar.