Monday, December 28, 2009

Yeti and OxAm

Getting some hard copy love from Yeti Magazine, which ran part of the Jim Dickinson oral history I did for the Voices of Civil Rights Oral History Project for AARP and the Library of Congress. Buy it for the cool cover alone. $12.

and from the Oxford American, whose December 2009 Southern Music issue features Arkansas and my reminiscence of Bongo Joe, the street musician who made Texas a more interesting place.

OA did a Q&A with the issue's writers. Here's mine:


Why is music important to you?

Music is better than any language or form of communication because it can move your body as well as your mind.

Please name the first recorded song that you ever truly loved and how old you were.

“Cool Water” by the Sons of the Pioneers followed by “Waterloo” by Homer and Jethro.

What song can’t you abide and why?

America’s “Horse With No Name” because the words are beyond dumb (“in the desert, you can remember your name, for there ain’t no one for to give you no shame”) even if they sound sorta like Neil Young.

What is your favorite line from a song?

“In the desert, you can remember your name….” and “It’s too late to stop now.”

Please name your favorite music-themed book.

DINO by Nick Tosches.

Please name your favorite music-themed movie.

PERFORMANCE (some twisted mofos behind that one).

Please name the most underrated album of all time.

TOGETHER AFTER FIVE by the Sir Douglas Quintet.

Please tell us of any interesting encounter you’ve had with a famous or semi-famous musician.

Sold two used records to Bob Dylan once while manning the counter of OK Records in Austin (the VERY BEST OF ERIC CLAPTON and WEASELS RIPPED MY FLESH by the Mothers of Invention). I was not impressed with either selection, especially since I was spinning Buddy Holly on the sound system.

Please name an annoying cliché that can be found in too much music writing.

Any phrase with the word “Best.”

What’s the most embarrassing thing you’ve ever done at a music show or concert?

I’ve never been embarrassed at a concert because everyone is always making asses out of themselves at concerts. No way could I stand out. First beer I ever bought when I was sixteen was at a James Brown show in Fort Worth. Then again, I did try to yell a few times during the recording of JAMES BROWN LIVE in Dallas, 1968, but I have never been able to pick out my voice. And I guess I did embarrass myself when I was flown to KC to interview Jim Dandy of Black Oak Arkansas before a show at Arrowhead Stadium. The story got killed but I did charge a bottle of Jack Daniels to room service after I observed Ed Ward doing the same before a Willie Nelson picnic. The management didn’t like it.


Anonymous said...

Joe Nick, here's my contribution -

1. First songs I truly loved - "How much is that Doggie in the Window?" by Patti Page. I was 4 and I loved the puppy dog barks. My taste improved by the time I hit 7, when I saw Jerry Lee Lewis singing "Great Balls of Fire" on the Ed Sullivan show. Loved the Killer ever since!

2. I can't stand "Honey" by Bobby Goldsboro. It's a maudlin piece of crap. However, Doug Sahm took the tune and morphed it into "Dallas Alice" which is a pretty funny song.

3. "My girlfriend Angel is a roadhouse queen/Makes Texas Ruby look like Sandra Dee" - Rodney Crowell "Ain't Livin' Long Like This" - I'm a fan of Curly Fox too.
"Je suis une gran Zombie" - - Dr. John "Walk on Guilded Splinters"

4. Favorite music themed book - "Willie Nelson" by Joe Nick Patoski - gotta support the home team!

5. Favorite music-themed movie - "Harder They Come"

6. Most underrated album - "A Period of Transition" Van Morrison with Dr. John. There wasn't one hit on the album and I don't think it ever made it to CD format. Luckily, I still have the vinyl.

7. Shared a joint with Joni Mitchell at JazzFest 1998 while watching Irma Thomas perform. Joni kept singing harmony in my ear. I should have been annoyed except it was Joni Mitchell.
Also, talked to Johnny Adams about one of his early albums while we were filling the urinals at the Satellite Lounge, Houston, 1996.

8. Annoying music cliche - Any time a DJ uses the phrase, "The late, great ...". Based on the music I listen to, that covers about 90% of the intros.

9. Drank too much at a Blood, Sweat and Tears concert and threw up on in front of my date.

Raizor's Edge said...

First song I loved: "Billy Bayou" by Jim Reeves. Jim has always been my favorite singer, bar none.

Song I can't stand: "Little Rosa" by Red Sovine. Stupid, syrupy, smarmy garbage. Thankfully, Ferlin Husky (as Simon Crum) gave that song the skewering it deserved as "Little Red Webb."

Favorite line from a song: "They say love conquers all, you can't start it like a car, you can't stop it with a gun" from "Searching for a Heart" by Warren Zevon.

Favorite music book: "Country Music USA" by Dr. Bill Malone. I'm writing a book, and his scholarly work on hillbilly music made it possible for me and everyone else to write serious works on music other than classical.

Favorite music movie: This is Spinal Tap.

Underrated album: Love & Hope & Sex & Dreams, the debut album by the BoDeans. Dang, that's a great album.

Interesting encounter: I was in Nashville to see the BoDeans at a fair on the grounds of the Starwood Amphitheater. Crosby, Stills and Nash were playing at the Amphitheater. I was walking through the grounds and saw Joe Vitale, drummer for CSN (as well as a solo artist and co-writer of Joe Walsh's "Rocky Mountain Way"). I called out "Joe Vitale!" and talked to him for a good two minutes -- completely ignoring Graham Nash, who was at his side.

Annoying cliche: the used of the term "underrated" for people who've sold 80 million albums.

Embarrassing thing: see the story about ignoring Graham Nash. I'm sure Vitale hasn't let Graham live that down, though.

Anonymous said...

1. First song I truly loved - "She's Not There" by the Zombies. Wikipedia tells me it was 1964. God, I'm old. Then the Beatles came and wiped everything else off the map.

2. Most awful song - There are too many to name just one.

3. Favorite line - "Papa saw a chicken standing in the yard, picked up a rock and threw it hard, threw it hard, killed him dead, now the chicken's in the gravy and the gravy's on the bread" Papa's On The Housetop by Leroy Carr & Scrapper Blackwell (1930)

4. Favorite music themed book - It's not really a completely music-themed book, but a couple of years ago our in-laws gave us 'All the Words' by Monty Python, and it's amazing how funny those skits and songs are in written form.

5. Favorite music-themed movie - The Man With the Golden Arm.

6. Most underrated album - Fleet Foxes' 1st album. Yeah, I know it's too new to be called 'underrated,' but the thing is amazing.

7. Most interesting music encounter - backstage meeting with Roger Daltrey at Who concert in 198?

8. Annoying music cliche - 'baby baby baby baby baby baby baby...'

9. Most embarrassing concert moment - I am proud to say that I have never done anything embarrassing at a concert. That I can remember.

Thanks, Joe Nick!