We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
A lot of musicians came out of Lubbock: Buddy Holly, Terry Allen, Butch Hancock, Jimmy Dale Gillmore, Joe Ely, Natalie Maines and her father Lloyd, et al. Amarillo Highway is perhaps Terry Allen's best-known song.
The closest I get to heaven
Is makin' speed on ol' 87
That hardass Amarillo Highway.
this is for you --good writing, and also about Lloyd Maines and that whole west texas music thing:
...and here's another'n --with a little blurb of conjecture from Allen on the geography/music wicheewhy:
((oh, what the hell, i'll paste it --it's pretty nifty --the bolding is mine))
From the time I was about six years old, I worked out there and sold 'set up's.' Lubbock was dry so people brought their own bottles and I would sell ice with lemons and Cokes so they could mix drinks under the table. That had a huge influence on my life but of course at the time, I didn't realize it. Also, my mother was a professional piano player up to the time that she married my father. She gave me the only lessons I ever had. She taught me "St Louis Blues" and then she said 'you're on your own.'
I grew up in kind of a musical environment in that sense. I don't think that ANYBODY grew up in Lubbock in a visual environment because there was barely one tree in town and it was especially flat in every direction. In retrospect, I think that was a huge influence because there was something about the absence of everything that made story-telling, music and any kind of imagery have a double impact. Plus, just the seduction of a horizon in a conservative, straight-laced place that Lubbock was and pretty much still is.
I think probably what had the biggest impact on me and most of my peers was rock and roll. It was the first thing that kind of addressed you as a human and not some institution that you cuddled up to, like school or family or church. It was the first big open door that I smelled that there might be something else in life besides Lubbock.
That and also my first automobile. A lot of times I do the song "Wolfman of Del Rio" (from Lubbock (On Everything)) and introduce the song by saying 'the first memory that anybody has growing up in that part of the country is when you get your first car because there's absolutely no reason to have a memory up until that point. A car really became the ultimate vehicle of every first-thing that ever happened to you in your life and the outside world and music-wise. It was also the early days of television and those funky black and white shows. It all just kind of jumbles together. Years away from it, it's pretty rich. At the time, it seemed barren.
I didn't really find out how rich it was until I went back to record Lubbock (On Everything). Pretty much as soon as I got my driver's license, I got out of there and went to California. I went to art school and lived most of the '60's in L.A. but I went back constantly because my family and my wife's family was in Lubbock. Every time I went back, I convinced myself that I despised it more. I used it as a classic vehicle like any kid with an imagination who uses their home ground. I made myself hate it to propel myself out of there. It was kind of a pretense, which I really learned after going back. After really hating this place for so long, circumstances got me back to there to do a record that I ended up calling Lubbock (On Everything). Until we had completely recorded it and listening to the mixes, it didn't dawn on me that all this lip service dislike, all of the songs that I was writing at this time were about anything but disliking that country. It made fun of a lot of stuff but it really dawned on me how endearing it was to me and how much I cared about it. It made one of those funny circles that life makes where you kind of run back in on yourself but all different. That's how I came to terms with it and loved going back there ever since.
--i realize that talking about music is like dancing about architecture (someone said), but that "human remains" album is about the finest thing out of modern country. The lyrics astound. It came out in '96. I picked up on it listening to KFAN while rassling dairy goats and cheese thru the nights. I sent it to mom 500 miles away in Lafayette, Louisiana, and she fell for it so hard when she passed away six years later it became in retrospect the last bit of fun we had together. I only listen to it once or twice every year or two --the mom memory is too sad for me mostly. but last weekend i dreamed about a baby crib in a dark run-down dusty old room --a baby had just died, she was still there, in her crib, in the dead of night with the wind blowing outside. Glad to wake up Saturday morn, i remembered that song "Little Sandy" off that album. So there I was, headphones on, listening, when my musician youngest surprised me, she had rolled out here from Austin to play on my old honky tonk office piano. She saw my screen, and said "I've been listening to that song for two days." If it wasn't a 16 year old album, and if we had even mentioned it to each other in about the last five or eight of 'em, it would not have caused us any wonderment. Weird. Synchronicity. Anyhoo here it is --it's not even in the top tier of the cuts on the wax but in the time you want something like it, replete with the distant bagpipe and the fiddle coming in with grim reaper force and aggression and then disarming you with the reality of the situation, well then there it will be, at your beckon call.
it didn't dawn on me that all this lip service dislike, all of the songs that I was writing at this time were about anything but disliking that country. It made fun of a lot of stuff but it really dawned on me how endearing it was to me and how much I cared about it. It made one of those funny circles that life makes where you kind of run back in on yourself but all different. That's how I came to terms with it and loved going back there ever since.
I get the impression that fellow Lubbock musician Natalie Maines has not yet come to that realization. She sees herself as a free-thinker. Immature might be a better description.
[Pandering to an anti-Bush Brit crowd by saying one is ashamed that Dubya is from Texas is not exactly speaking truth to power. What the hell. Perhaps she is more to be pitied than censured, like the old song said.]
--well, they were on a stage in London iirc --helluva place to delegitimize the country, right or wrong. The underlying message "we're not like those folks back home in Lubbock" was plenty true enough, if not the way the Dixie Pander Bear Chicks thought they were saying it.
There's nothing but flat land and big sky between Lubbock and the North Pole but for a little slosh of Hudson's Bay and few dozen bobwar fences --and that's two-thirds of the entire Latitude of the Northern Hemisphere.