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I Kan't Spell



Tuesday, August 14, 2007

 
Today's Youtube Artist : Jackson Browne

When I was a kid - Jackson Browne is what my parents listened to and it was invariably what I listened to by the age of 8. By the age of 11 I had owned every album and memorized every song. I used to sit in my room and just listen to him bemoan and languish out these lyrics of hoe dashed and future's on interest. And it was then that I thought I could write poetry or it was at least him that made me want to write something. His lyrics made me think, cry, celebrate, and even laugh.

Here is a taste of some of the songs that I could find - -

Everyman - this is a covered classis by Bonne Raitt and Neil Young. Oddly both of those artists combined with Warren Zevon, The Eagles, CSN, and David Lindley all lived near each other in their early 20's and all give praise to Jackson in their early releases. Even Neil Young has touted Jackson as being the greatest song writer he ever met...(in actuality he's the poor man's Dylan - but Jackson is...just Jackson...he's like an old car that you love or a baseball mitt that you find in a closet that was yours when you were a child. Jackson is just a strong blow of dust away from being one of the greats.)

"Seems like i've always been looking for some other place to get it together. Where with a few of my friends I could give up the race and maybe find something better. In all my fine dreams and well thought out schemes to gain the mother land, have all eventually come down to waiting for every man."





Lives in the Balance - During the 80's Jackson got very political with No Nukes, Apartheid, and Farm Aid. He was going back to his roots as a man of the people and an advocate for what plagued his mind. In his elder years it wasn't about the passionate love of a boy anymore - it was about the future of his own children and the pain that comes with seeing lies through non-naive glasses. (this also features the amazing David Lindley on the wee picker)


"They sell us the president the same way. They sell us our clothes and our cars.
They sell us every thing from youth to religion. The same time they sell us our wars."


Before the Deluge - In the summer of 1974 Jackson released his master piece. At age 26 he released what his fans would consider to be a quinnessential piece of folk rock that would become part of the bed rock of any collection. If you were to buy one Jackson Browne album, I would recommend this one. It is unparalleled in it's breadth of subject and depth of morality. In this song you can hear how Jackson would soon become the mouth piece for a new peace generation.


"And their feathers, once so fine, grew torn and tattered
And in the end they traded their tired wings
For the resignation that living brings
And exchanged loves bright and fragile glow
For the glitter and the rouge
And in the moment they were swept before the deluge"


The Pretender – This is Jackson's greatest song and his most prolific. He talks about the death of the Hippie, of Love, and the rise of the Yuppie class. Released in 1976 after the Suicide of his wife, Jackson changed after this album. Even though Running on Empty was released after this it was recorded on this tour... and before his Wife's surmise. The Pretender is the anthem for any new lovers. It is the great Sunday morning song and Jackson might be one of the only people that I know, when he sings it, that I believe. (this also features a younger Lindley on Violin)



"and then we put our dark glasses on..."

Now on to my two favorite Jackson songs -

Your Bright Baby Blues - Another song about the death of the 60's and also released on the Pretender album. This may be Jackson at his Western Alt Country best. His tangling web of highways, women, drugs, and self loathing introspection that is spun in the loss of something enigmatic but tangible is Jackson’s way of hugging you. It's his way of syaing "I don't know either. But it's kinda fucked...and in a way...it's also kinda great." Jackson can speak your heart right out of your mouth. I still cry at this song times.



"It's so hard to come by
That feeling of peace
This friend of mine said
"Close your eyes, and try a few of these"
I thought I flying like a bird
So far above my sorrow
But when I looked down
I was standing on my knees"


Barricades of Heaven - This was recorded from Storytellers on VH1. I remember Jenkins calling me in high school and telling me that this was coming on. I had time to put in a VHS and record it. I had heard this song before - but it's the story - the acoustic guitar and the great way Jackson makes you remember your youth like it was the greatest thing ever (which it undoubtedly is) - - This song is just him at his matured best. Reflection at it's finest.



"Running down around the towns along the shore
When I was sixteen and on my own
No, I couldn’t tell you what the hell those brakes were for
I was just trying to hear my song"
The other song I would highly recommend that I can't find is - Looking Into You.


Boulevard - this song was during the Cocaine Jackson days - and the lyrics unfortunately suffered immensely. This was fused with the Fast Time at Ridgemont High single "Got to be Somebody’s Baby". This is not Jackson's best work - but oddly it is his most commercially successful - -seriously.


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