How do you find something that was ok with never being found? I mean, you’re likely to find the thing that you were looking for, the thing that shouted its own name until someone heard and wrote it down and showed the thing its name written down just so it would shut up. I mean, there will be a reason that Ayn Rand books, whatever you think of them, will never be out of print. You’re also likely to find the thing that did everything it could to stop itself from being found, which destroyed the masters, which caused its creator to get a job they hated just to make sure they wouldn’t mention the thing when people asked them what they had been up to. Kafka, Plath, (inevitably) Salinger. The extremes, as per usual, get the attention.
Which leaves Lee Hazlewood stuck. Hazlewood was always more famous as a songwriter than he was as a song-singer. He got paid enough money to do one or the other, and when his American record label put too many restrictions on what they would release by him, he moved to Sweden, became somewhat of a superstar there, and then came back once his records had found a niche again. Hazlewood isn’t the type for the grand artistic gesture, he introduces these songs like he’s the pipe-and-sunday-paper-type, the ass-in-the-blue-lay-z-boy type, the grand kids listen because they know grandpa gives out two dollar bills at the end of each visit type. He’s not that, but that’s how he’s choosing to portray himself, and so that’s what we’re left with. Anyone who wouldn’t, by pure chance, listen closer to these songs (and, really, by that I mean most everyone) would think of him as a man who must never look in a mirror or else he’d shave that godawful mustache, and a man who wrote some songs.
The more I think about it, fuck artists like that. Why would you undersell yourself like that? Take the easy way out and not have to deal with people. Lee Hazlewood had a way with words that makes you want to write his words down just so you can read them. Lee Hazlewood had a voice that calmed you like finding a doorknob or a recognized body in the dark. He was more than he would let you think of him. I’m doing his grunt work for him, but he’s good enough that he deserves it. Bastard.
Also, I downloaded this band because they were playing shows with Yo La Tengo, had a great band name, and wrote a song called Werner Herzog get shot. But after all that pretense, Get Well Soon are just a really good, moody, shelf-clearing german rock band.
Also, Jerry Brown- pretty great.
Also, coming up Chicagonians, you should go see