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no room for hipsters

the occupation of Ashley and Levon

(from Levon)

If you’ve been following my tour dates you may be wondering why I’m talking about sitting here and not touring around Michigan with the band.  It didn’t work out that I could go, from my end, but I’ll still be playing in the video, for the Gibson thing, and Mercury Lounge.  When I walk off the stage Tuesday night, our subway ride will end in Harlem and we’ll get back behind the wheel headed south.  

Instead of filming a song with the guys on Detroit’s morning news channel, I’m sitting here watching Bruce Springsteen on Storytellers.  I’ve only relatively recently become a fan of the Boss, thanks to Frankie (Mister Softee).  And since I have, eventually to Ashley’s annoyance, I only talk about Fender Telecasters and absorb the stack of albums that needed catching up on.  (I’m not very good at listening to music in moderation.)  Now to see Bruce talking about his songs line by line is quite a find for a day like today.  Ironically though, here’s what he just said: “Talking about music is like talking about sex.  It doesn’t really need explaining, and if it did, you wouldn’t use words.”   

I’m glad he can joke about it and stand there on TV talking anyway, using one form of expression to explain another type of expression.  As much as art should stand alone, its often better enjoyed with added commentary.  Otherwise museums wouldn’t check out headphones and songwriters wouldn’t make jokes while they tune their guitars.  Or what about me, the guy who blogs 700 words a day and turns out a song only rarely in comparison?  I started blogging as a way to keep up with everyone when we left #1, and #2 it helps me crystallize my thoughts.  And obviously it is our chosen method of networking; after all myspace is dead, facebook is not band friendly yet, and twitter is !!AWESOME!! but ultimately not that informative.  What will be next?  Only time, folks.  Lets talk about the Boss some more.

Love him or hate him, the man captured what a group of people were feeling and kept it up for decades.  He elevates arenas of people singing anthems of unity.  Even the music elitist can’t deny that Nebraska is one of the greatest folk albums of all time.  If the Boss says not to talk about songs, but does it a little bit anyway, I guess its okay for me.  

I’m going to paraphrase the last few words of the show as he put his guitar back on the stand. 

“After 30 years you sort of internalize your craft.  Its becomes a second language or like a second skin.  You feel like you can say what you feel without thinking.  All you can do is look up to the god of creativity and aliveness and hope you’re ready.”

Thanks, boss.  I will.

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