country zeitgeist



have a sore throat

what about you

The Sheff interview went great! Thanks so much for coming!

My question about “drug-country” got a little garbled and I did the thing I sometimes do in these contexts where I ask a question, the person answers it, and then I ask an only slightly different clarificatory version of the same question, and the person’s like, “well, I just answered that question, but, since we’re sitting in front of 400 people, I suppose I’ll try again…”

Sheff mentioned ex–Mamas and the Papas singer John Phillips, whose recently reissued John, the Wolf King of L.A. is a worthwhile purchase/download. (Okkervil covers Phillips’s “April Anne” here.) A Colleague  told me yesterday that he’s trying to get more into straight-up George Strait-up style country music, the final unturned stone in his colossally eclectic stone wall of music appreciation. Bad metaphors due to influenza. I felt the same way in college about “butt” rock until I spent a year living with a dude named Stylophone.

Appears that David Berman has a playlist, (whatever that means…) and so I here publicly urge my country-shy Colleague to look up some of the folks on this list (Prefab Sprout and Simple Minds don’t count!). Also appearing in the “shadow of the pylon” is one Gary Stewart, who another blognonymous dude has been “hipping me to.” Pretty great, pretty straight:


For all that, all of the above is still pretty dusty and druggy and cool. What about the real mainstream big-time commercial country of today? Does anyone I know actually like that stuff?

I’m interested in a writer like Jon Caramanica’s interest in country music: he writes intelligently about hip-hop and indie-rock but his interest in dudes like Big & Rich seems unironic and deep. I have a cold, and I’m linking to articles I haven’t read.

A better example may be Jane Dark, who I’d guess only listens to Situationist post-punk remixes but in fact is a stalwart champion of New Nashville. (Is that a real genre?)

I’d “tease out this thread” more but I have to go betray the abovementioned Colleage by stuffing my cold (it’s “stuff a cold, starve a flu,” right?) with another Colleague’s airlifted porks.

I love you.