Day fourteen. It's been one week since you looked at me. It's been one broken-down (and subsequently repaired!) bus, one six-hour delay at O'Hare, and one backup travel plan. It's been one double-overdue return to St. Louis. It's been one care package from our friends at Abita, one trumpet sit-in from our old friend Craig Sorrells, one Ritz, one Fillmore, one Pageant, one House of Blues, and one Egyptian Room. It's been real, glorious, taxing, rejuvenating, mind-blasting tour. It's been about eighty songs and somewhere upwards of seven thousand people. It's been three Star Wars movies (the good ones, but the bad versions of them), five remote-control cars, and seven hundred thousand million billion miles, give or take. But now, we've turned the corner. I can feel home on my fingertips, taste it like mist on my tongue.
Here are some things:
-Is there a name for the psychological phenomenon that occurs when, as a child, you hear something implausible, and you just take it at face value until adolescence, or even adulthood? I think it's beautiful when someone just casually drops one of those at a party, like, "oh yeah, everyone knows that since 1980 the President has had to poop in a special toilet that checks his stool to make sure no one on the White House staff is slowly poisoning him.” One time when I was little a friend told me that if you sleep curled up with a dog and the dog has a bad dream, you'll have the same bad dream that the dog is having. I don't remember how long it took me to question that, but it was longer than zero seconds. SOMEONE PLEASE STUDY THIS.
-Did you know that there's a Murderpedia? And did you know that it's exactly what it sounds like? I can't decide if I'm okay with this.
-I recently stumbled across Deadspin's Big Book of Black Quarterbacks and I think it's super interesting. It's an attempt to compile a comprehensive list of every black athlete whoever was drafted in professional football as a quarterback, played quarterback at the professional level, or both. It's also a fascinating look at the (sometimes, kind of) side-by-side evolution of race relations in sports and in the country as a whole. But the real reason I'm bringing it up is because I want to be the first one to tell you that there was once an NFL quarterback named Willie Thrower. Willie. Thrower! And he played quarterback! The world needs more of this kind of name/job synergy. I'm changing my last name to "Bandmember.”
It may be redundant, since they've been opening for us on the vast majority of this tour, but the friend whose album I'm plugging today is Muddy Magnolias! I'm bending the rules a little bit, because while their full-length debut, Broken People, is an excellent showcase of their brand of raw southern rock and stellar dual vocals, I really want to talk about their one-off single, "American Woman.” No, not the Guess Who song (or Lenny Kravitz cover) of the same name- this "American Woman" is an anthem all their own. It's such a towering monument to female awesomeness that it almost makes me jealous- I keep wishing there were songs like this for men, but then I remember that that's been like, ninety percent of music since the advent of secular art. Anyway, it's also a total banger, featuring the most rewarding slow-burn I've heard in a very long time: