Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Waylon and Willie, and the Pretty

Unlike the lad, Arkaedi Sue has developed quite the love of music. She is a big fan of Elvis, at least the rendition sung badly by Papa, and she absolutely loves late seventies country. We have done a good bit of dancing to "Mammas Don't Let Your Babies" and "Ain't No God in Mexico," which is no end of fun.

I really enjoy this musical period myself. There is a humor and self-awareness that I really like, and you know that they are just having a blast. Some of the most quotable and strange lines come from these songs. "Mammas Don't Let Your Babies":
[Cowboys like] little warm puppies, children and girls of the night.
"Ain't No God in Mexico":
If I'd never seen the sunshine then I would not curse the rain. If my feet could fit the railroad tracks, I guess I'd been a train.
Jennings got strange in old age, and rumor has it later took seriously goofy songs he wrote in jest, like "Okie from Muskogee." If that's true, it's sad. At least Willie has kept his sense of fun.

Growing up, I was surrounded by the dueling stupid periods of country music: 80s and 90s country, pop beats and stupid hats, with boastful songs and rich suburban kids claiming they were truly country, repeatedly, and had the mullets to prove it. And Vegas style, shiny sequined jackets and short hair. The Willies, Waylons and Johnny Cash artists were out there, I imagine, but they didn't trickle down from the smoky old pool rooms to my television in West By God. Which is for the best, I suppose. I like them now, and I can give them to my kids without any preconceived ideas or fantasies of my youth. I wasn't a cowboy, I was a bored child in the country reading comic books. Now, Arkaedi Sue can be a dancing child in Seattle, but there's plenty of room to pretend to be a cowgirl. Or an outlaw musician. She'll look better in the braids than Willie.

PS. That first image is Willie, pre-braids. I like the turtleneck. The hippies did bad things to you, my friend. Braids AND pot? Sad.


WildBeggar said...

A post about punk loads gets 20 comments and waylon and willie get jack? sad, sad state of affairs. that's kali yuga for ya...

jeff said...

but punk loads are something we can bite into, while waylon and willie are just too awesome for words.

and i think a new punk subgrouping was truly codified here. "load punks". at least they are probably too busy loading to produce any crappy bands. or zines about loading.

actually, one comment now that you brought my attention to it again: waylon, johnny and willie did try to stem the tide of shite country in the 80s and 90s. they did the highwaymen together (with kris kristofferson). and it fucking kicked ass:

"perhaps i may become a highwayman again. or i may simply be a single drop of rain. but i will remain. and i will be back again and again and again......"

WildBeggar said...

oh yeah, kristofferson... great songwriter. gravely too! i dig him.

WildBeggar said...

Okie from muskogee was merle haggard. Sorry about that.

xmiyux said...

Merle Haggard is awesome.

I will have to respectfully disagree with you on Willie. The braids are awesome.