049: Chrysalis (J. Spider Barbour), ‘Summer in Your Savage Eyes’

This week’s SoTW is long, even by my shaggy dog standards. What can you do? It’s a long story, spanning 45 years. It spins the strange tale of an obscure artist, his music, J. Spider Barbour and his band Chrysalis. The story as I tell it is full of detours, tangents, and irrelevancies; so don’t expect a “well-made” dramatic storyline here. Only a bizarre chain of events in which real life and fantasy intertwine in their ironic and inextricable way.

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039: Blind Willie Johnson, ‘Mother’s Children Have a Hard Time’

Willie was blinded at age seven when the lye his stepmom threw at his dad missed. He sang on the street corners of Beaumont, Texas and slept in a li’l church. When it burned down, with nowhere else to go, he slept there in a rain-soaked bed and caught pneumonia. And you think you got the blues?

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Going Up to Jerusalem with Kurt Elling

June 5, 2011 The Fantasy Perhaps a person can be defined by his fantasies. There was a time when my wildest dream would have been Petula Clark asking me to come up to see her etchings. And there was a time when it was Phil Jackson asking me for advice on defensive strategy. And for […]

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