I’ve never met Rickie Lee Jones, have never seen her in concert, don’t recall having read an interview with her. But, I’ve heard the story that she walked offstage in a huff once, angry that something wasn’t to her liking. The teller of the story mentioned that it happened at [gasp!] a charity concert! Have you ever…? Since that time, I’m held in my mind that Rickie Lee Jones is “difficult” and “full of herself”.
Interesting, isn’t it, that I would make such a judgment based on the hearsay of someone else with no immediate experience of my own and, really, with no direct knowledge of RLJ? It’s like looking at a picture of a model in a magazine and saying, “she’s beautiful,” when, in fact, all I know is that she takes a beautiful picture.
(Oh yeah: what if she is full of herself? So am I — and I can’t sing or write songs.)
I’ve been going through a rough patch in my life. Some of my confidants point to the grave condition of the world economy and suggest I’m not the only one. True enough, but what fears I have around my wallet probably run deeper than that. Nothing inspires introspection more than financial struggles (and then I get to see what the fear really is all about).
I sometimes see a picture of Tom Waits in my mind, in a dusty old house with dirt floors and newspapers over the windows, wearing a Mule Variations t-shirt and a porkpie hat, counting $100 bills out of a worn suitcase. Above his head is a cartoon balloon of him saying: “Mule variations my ass. I bang on a tin pipe, give it a title and these suckers buy it every time.”
At other times, I think he’s a genius.
My 10-year old pointed out this morning that “these guys sound like Trampled By Turtles…”. Well, something like that.
If I could be someone else — and I have to admit, there are times when I’d really like to be someone else — I think I’d like to be Junior Brown. Because Junior is a human being he likely has his own bag of hammers that he carries around with him, ball peens he can use to pound out his own brand of existential problems. But, all things being equal beyond that, I wish I could play guitar like him. My kids, operating on a much less emotionally twisted level, simply think this is a fun song.
Namaste all you sentient beings. Namaste.
The picture above was drawn by my 6-year old daughter. I call it That’s What I Was Thinking. I don’t know what she calls it…