Friday, July 23, 2010

Sing Me Back Home


"Every man's memory is his private literature."

~Aldous Huxley

Waikiki in the distance. Taken from Palolo Valley

"Everybody needs his memories.

They keep the wolf of insignificance

from the door."

~Saul Bellow

Lei Stand in Chinatown, Honolulu

"Pleasure is the flower that passes;


the lasting perfume."

~Jean de Boufflers


Growing up in Philadelphia
we were blue collar and ethnic,
but we were urban people
with a patina of middle-brow sophistication
when needed;
My parents knew how to dress and behave
at the parent/teacher meeting.

Country Music
was the sound of OTHERS:
Rural, Super White, Conservative.
It was the music of folks that hated folks like us
even before I was a freak (what others called 'hippies').

Let's just say that it wasn't what we heard at home.

But the folk movement
made us look at C&W as a true folk expression,
sequined sports jackets, bouffants and all!

Plus it was marvelously transgressive
for me to be a country fan.
Youthful rebellion - so predictable.

Merle Haggard's Okie From Muskogee
about summed up the gulf.

But later,
through his tribute album to

I became a fan of ole Merle.
In fact I became quite a country fan.

My pal Jim and I even drove to
Great Adventure in New Jersey
so see Willie Nelson in his

When we got there
it was coming down pretty good'
and only a handful of us waited in the stands.

But Willie and his band,
Sis on piano, and that nice Jewish boy on mouth harp,
played us quite a nice intimate little set.

What a great memory!

Last night I caught the PBS' American Masters
devoted to Merle.

It brought back so much!

I'm glad hubby went to sleep a bit early
so I could just sit there and cry.

A whole period of my life opened up to memory.

I though of how Jim used to sing
and I wished I could hear it one more time.

So many great songs!

I've been listening on Pandora & Grooveshark all day.

If I had to pick just one Merle song to share,
Working Man Blues comes to mind,
but it has to be this one:

Listen to it with my Aloha....

Let Merle sing YOU back home too...

"I'm 70. At this point if they gave me a life sentence,
it would only be a few years.
So F**k `em!"

Merle Haggard