Quote of Tomorrow:
“M is for the mud flaps she give him for his pickup truck. And
O is for the oil he puts on his hair.
T is for Thunderbird.
H is for Haggard.
E is for eggs.
R is for REDNECK!” —Ray Wylie Hubbard
After TB got that rant down below off my chest I ambled over to Facebook where Alexis de Toadville and Little Boy (CS you keep me guessing but this moniker seemed apropos) were discussing their pending Jazz Fest Itineraries. De Toad mentioned that Van Morrison didn’t play “Brown-Eyed Girl” the last time he was at the Fest and said by way of caution that those expecting to see it this time may be disappointed. I realize that the song is, if not the number one most overplayed song in history, that it is in the discussion, and thus a lot of folks don’t really like it. I do, though. Back when I was single you were guaranteed a dance with any girl you could get to first if there was drinkin’ goin’ on, and there usually was, and so I have a lot of good memories associated with it, cliche or not.
Anyway, the fact that Morrison leaves it out sometimes got me thinking about how sick of a tune one might get playing it over and over every night for forty years. I’ve heard musicians talk about such a problem before, such as Buffett and “Margaritaville”, Willie and “On the Road Again” and others. But my favorite story about such a plight comes from Ray Wylie Hubbard and “Up Against the Wall”. Here he is telling about the inspiration behind that song. It’s pretty funny, but doesn’t include the exact part of the story I was looking for.
Here’s the version played at Willie’s Picnic in 1974
And all this is relevant to De Toad, LB, Jazz Fest and “Brown Eyed Girl” not only because of the unlikely and sweet horn section in the ’74 video, which also, notably, omits the spellout, but because I heard him tell a version of this story on XM cross-country one time where he ended it by mentioning how much he hated that song for a years, but then the royalty checks just kept comin’ and kept comin’ and they gradually wore him down and now he’s at peace singin’ it every show, and the checks keep comin’. Sorry I couldn’t find that version on the webs.