Story 1996-03-20 Dublin, Ireland

20.03.96 Dublin, Ireland, intro to ´Adam Raised a Cain´
´´Good evening, Dublin….oh, nice to be back…´s where I give my little disclaimer, uh, all the music tonight´s real quiet so for me to able to give you my best, I sort of need your co-operation in maintaining that silence and so, uh, it´s a community event so if somebody around you´s making a little too much noise, feel free to band together and very politely just ask them to shut the fuck up, please….if that don´t work out, just, I´ll come out and slap ´em around a little bit myself, alright (chuckles) alright, my friends….´´

20.03.96 Dublin, Ireland, intro to ´Straight Time´
´´Thank you very much…..this is a, uh… about a fellow….who gets out of prison and he´s….trying to find his way back into his….his family, back into….something that feels like a normal life, back into the world….but uh….I think it´s hard to lose your old habits, even the ones that….that´ve led you wrong or come close to killing you….so this is a song about somebody struggling real hard to be new, to find some place to be new again….this is called ´Straight Time´….´´

20.03.96 Dublin, Ireland, intro to ´Highway 29´
´´Thank you, thank you….this is a, uh….this is a song about self-knowledge which….is kind of a funny thing because, uh…..less of it you have, the more you think you have, you see (chuckles) that´s its twisted blessing (chuckles) when I was, uh, 22 or 3, I had a shitload of self-knowledge (chuckles) lost it along the way somewhere (chuckles) alright, this is about losing it and finding it too late, this is called ´Highway 29´….´´

20.03.96 Dublin, Ireland, intro to ´The Wish´
´´Thank you, alright….I’m gonna take a….little, uh….risk here, this is a song I’ve played about four or five times and….I wrote it about ten years ago….put it away, didn’t sing it for about nine years….and uh….embarrassing reason, you see it’s a song about my mother….and you can get away with quite a bit in rock and roll music….singing about your mother….no….. you can sing about fucking your mother….that’s alright…that’s been done, alright (chuckles) nothing new or fresh in that (chuckles) but singing about your mother, that’s reserved usually for country music…..some great mother-singers…..and also gospel music, there’s a whole genre, believe it or not, for people singing about their mothers….uh….lot of mother-lovers in gospel music….so, uh….so .I feel a little nervous but, uh….it takes a man to sing about his mother, ladies and gentlemen (chuckles) so can somebody step out of the crowd, no (chuckles) but uh….oh, let’s not forget, before I begin that, uh, Elvis Presley, one of the greatest mother-lovers of all time (chuckles) but he never sang about his mother, you know, he only made that first record for his mother and he didn’t put that out (chuckles) ok….I’m not gonna keep you waiting on the edge of your seats any longer (chuckles) ooh, gonna take a little drink….(someone yells) uh, a mother-lover from the crowd (chuckles) hey, there’s gotta be a lot of Irish men in the crowd ! ….´cause with the Irish and the Italian, it´s always ‘Mamma’, alright ….´Mum’, alright here we go (chuckles)….´´

20.03.96 Dublin, Ireland, intro to ´It´s the Little Things That Count´ (following ´The Wish´)
´´Uh, it´s good to see that mother-loving is strong and well tonight (?)….we move from motherhood to sex (chuckles) we´ll see how that´s doing in Dublin, alright (chuckles)(?) want the long story or the short story ? (crowd: ´The long one´) the long one, that´s what I was afraid of, alright (chuckles) I´m in my mother´s Cadillac….I´m in a city that I can´t name on a freeway that I can´t mention, you´ll see the reason why….uh, I´m going to a friend of mine´s house for dinner, um, but I´m gonna be late, I get stuck in traffic so I´m gonna practise some of my new-found maturity, gonna pull over, call ´em to tell ´em I´m gonna be late….I pull off the freeway but I´m in this industrial area, nothing but factories, everything´s closed….but in the distance I see a little bar open on the corner….I go down there, park the Cadillac, I go into the bar….I ask ´em where the payphone is, they point me to the back but I´ve only got 20 bucks in my pocket when I get to the payphone so I go back to the bartender, I said ´Gee, can you give me change for a twenty ? I need to use the phone´…. he says ´Well, we don´t give any change around here´….I said ´Oh, do you mean like you don´t give any change in the bar or like the whole community´s got together and said ´Fuck ´em, when they come through here, no more change´ ?´, you know….so he doesn´t say anything but there´s a waitress watching the whole thing and she´s just sort of standing there not saying anything, then she sort of wanders up and goes like this and there between her fingers there´s a quarter….so I take the quarter, I say ´Thank you, ma´am´, I go to the payphone, I put the money into the phone, I dial the number but it seems that I´m just outside the area code and that´s a 50-cent call… I say to the waitress, I say ´Gee, this is a 50-cent call´ and she just looks at me and she says ´Oh, that´s too bad´ (chuckles) uh, then she says ´But ….I´ll give you another quarter if you give me a ride home´ (some hollering) what are you getting so excited about ? (chuckles) alright, ok, now understand that I made all that shit up for entertainment purposes (chuckles) alright….´´

**20.03.96 Dublin, Ireland, intro to ´Brothers Under the Bridges´ (following ´It´s the Little Things That Count´) **
´´Yeah, always carry that change, ladies and gentlemen (chuckles)….this is a song that, uh, is set in the San Gabriel mountains….it´s a mountain range in-between, uh, San Fernando Valley and the Mojave Desert outside of Los Angeles, there was a group of homeless Vietnam Vets who left the city and set up a camp out there….and this is a story about one of ´em….that, uh, has grown daughters that he´s never seen….and uh, she comes looking for her dad….and what he has to say to her, this is called ´Brothers Under the Bridges´….´´

20.03.96 Dublin, Ireland, intro to ´Dry Lightning´
´´Thanks, uh, hey, I´d appreciate if some of you guys with the flash cameras would put them in your pocket or something….or you can crush ´em under your left foot too (chuckles) this is, uh….a song about men and women and I didn´t write about men and women for about 30 years….don´t know why, could I have been confused ?….nah (chuckles) I don´t know….I always tell the folks that I had a, I was in one relationship for 30 years….it just was with a lot of different women, you see (chuckles) but it was the same one, you know (chuckles) over and over again (chuckles) uh, I guess this is a song about one of those where you, you feel close but you can´t figure it out, you know….uh, you can´t quite get there….it ends up in a stand-off of some sort….yeah…..this is about just missing it, but just missing it is still missing it….´Dry Lightning´….´´

20.03.96 Dublin, Ireland, intro to ´Spare Parts´
´´(?)….uh, I remember when I was a kid, I used to think if I, you know, wrote the right song or took the right stand, you could change the world….then you get a little older and the world looked like, looks like it´s unchangeable, intractable, like it won´t budge….this is about somebody that changes themselves with just a decision….and changes the part of the world they touch….that´s not so bad….´´

20.03.96 Dublin, Ireland, intro to ´Youngstown´
´´(?)(chuckles)….here´s another song about spare parts, this is uh….I was in Youngstown, Ohio, a couple of months ago and it was the, uh….center of the steel industry in the United States, one of the centers, for the first half of the century….and, uh, the mills closed down in late-70´s and early 80´s and uh….the town lost about two-thirds of its population and thousands and thousands of jobs and when you go there now, everybody has a father or a brother….you know….that was affected in some fashion….and uh….so there´s families that have lived there a generation after generation….that built the buildings that we lived in and the bridges that we crossed…..then the world changes and they´re deemed expendable….´´

20.03.96 Dublin, Ireland, intro to ´Sinaloa Cowboys´
´´Alright, this is Kevin, this is Kevin Buell, my guitar technician….financial advisor, guru…. yogi teacher….personal trainer (chuckles) sexual counsellor (chuckles) uh, alright….a fellow New Jerseyan (chuckles)….this is a….(?)….this is a series of songs all set on the California-Mexico border, uh….I was in this little desert town in Arizona a couple of years ago….and uh (?) the whole Southwest once you get off the interstate….there´s a gas-station and uh….on one corner there´s a gas-station, on another corner there´s a grocery store, on one corner there´s a motel and on one corner there´s a bar….whichever one you go to first depends on where you´re gonna go next (chuckles) all the necessities of human existence in one little spot….and there´s 100 miles and there´s nothing….but, uh, it was late at night, I guess it was around 11.30, I was sitting outside this little motelroom and these two Mexican men came in from the West and one was about my age, I guess, and one was a young kid….and they started looking at the motorcycles and we started talking and he´d had a younger brother killed in a Southern California motorcycle accident a few months earlier, he rode with a group called the (?)….and there was something in his voice that always, always stayed with me, we sat for about an hour and talked about, about his brother….and I think that once, particularly once you have your own kids (?) you´re, you know that, that idea of protecting ´em, even though in the end, I guess, you really can´t but that always feels like you should…. like that first line of family is to protect the ones that come after you and when that breaks down, whether it´s your fault or not, when I thnk….I don´t know if that´s the loss I couldn´t handle (?) so I was writing a song on the Central California drug trade, they have Mexican gangs come up into the Central Valley and, and hire migrant workers to work in these drug labs, they´re the ones that usually get blown up or busted by the DEA, it´s a song about two brothers and I….was hearing my friend´s voice in my head so I dedicate this every night to my mysterious friend, this is called….´Sinaloa Cowboys´….´´

20.03.96 Dublin, Ireland, intro to ´The Line´
´´Thank you, this, uh….this next song is set on….the San Diego border station….they have a lot of young guys that get out of the army and…..end up working for the California border patrol….it can be a confusing job…..a Mexican writer Carlos Fuentes said California was Mexico till about 1848 and that border´s more like a scar….it´s hard to know where that line always is….´´

20.03.96 Dublin, Ireland, intro to ´Balboa Park´
´´Thank you, this, uh….this next song, this is a song about kids and uh….it´s kind of funny, you know, before I had any kids, I always asked my buddies, you know, ´What it´s like ?´ ´Oh, it´s great, great´ (?) you´re stuck now´ (chuckles) then your friends come over and they bore you to death talking about their kids, you know, but you have to act….excited (chuckles) ´Really ?´ ´Yeah, he took a piss, it went right into the bowl´….´You´re shitting me !´ (chuckles) ´´Fact, call Guinness now ! (chuckles) they´re waiting for this information´ (chuckles) then what´s worse is they bring ´em over….I lived alone for 30 years….I don´t like people touching my stuff….and uh….that´s what kids like to do but you can´t yell at somebody else´s kid, you know what that´s like, it´s very touchy, so you have to sit there…. and out of the corner of your eye, you´re seeing ´em tiptoeing all around (chuckles) then finally it´s ´Oh ! gee, I´m sorry, was that expensive ?´ (chuckles) ´Nah, I can get another guitar anytime´ (chuckles) you know, then you do, you do, you have your own….you get to seek revenge (chuckles) ´Ooh yeah, go on, go get that´ (chuckles) how sweet it is (chuckles) then I get to bore thousands speaking about my own kids (chuckles)(?) but uh, I guess the big, there´s something that they do, you know, people ask you what´s the difference, I think the kids when they come into your life they….kids have this window onto the grace that´s in the world and that can be hard to get to but they seem to have this, this access to it and they bring it into your life all the time….I think that as you get older, that, that window closes down (?) what, what the world does or….from your own fear, I don´t know what….I don´t know, I guess that´s what sort of drives people to films and to music and to read novels and engage in unusual sexual practises (chuckles) to bring that grace back into their life (chuckles) but uh, yeah….but, uh, kids bring it with them when they come, I remember after my first, when I had my first son, I remember going out (?) the wind felt different on your face and the sun…..felt different, you know….you want to yell at everybody to stop shopping or something (chuckles) but uh, this is a song about kids, I think that once you have your own (?) you know, you´re always….in touch with ´em, this is a song about kids that come across the border to San Diego, 10, 11, 12, 13 years old….they end up running dope or selling themselves in this place called Balboa Park….that´s what happens when that grace, that grace gets violated….´´

20.03.96 Dublin, Ireland, intro to ´Across the Border´
´´Thank you….when I was, uh, I was 20, I think 26, 27 years old, a friend of mine showed me a film, John Ford´s Grapes of Wrath and I remember sitting there when it was done and thinking ´Yeah, that´s….that´s what I wanna do´, you know, you always….you always hope that you´ll be able to do work that´ll mean something….and that was a picture that resonated throughout….the whole rest of my life….you know, I always go back to it….I think because it asks a real fundamental question that we sort of answer by the choices we make every day, by the things that we do and….the film and the novel, the Steinbeck novel, I think ask the question: are we all individual souls and is our….is there such a thing as independent salvation….can you really in the end just save yourself or are we connected in some fashion and that….and do we sort of rise and fall….at least in spirit, you know, as one…..and uh, that seems to be the question….and there´s a scene at the end of the movie….Tom, Tom Joad´s killed a security guard that´s killed his friend and he knows he´s gonna have to leave his family….and he´s gonna have to tell his mother that after she´s come thousands of miles and they´ve left their home and they´ve lost their home and they´ve lost family members and they don´t know what tomorrow´s gonna bring and he´s gonna have to tell her that now she´s gonna have to lose her son…..that scene is set up by another scene, that´s a dance in this work camp and it´s just very lovely….the faces….the, the music….and I always thought it was Ford sort of holding out possibility of beauty even in a very brutal, brutal world….because when there´s beauty there´s hope and when there´s hope there´s divine love or whatever you wanna call it….so after the dance Tom slips into his mother´s tent and he touches her very gently and wakes her up and he says ´Mama, I gotta go now´ and they step out underneath these trees…..and she says ´Well, Tommy, I knew this day was gonna come but how am I gonna know how you are ? how am I gonna know where you are ?….how am I gonna know if you´re alright, if you´re alive ? how will I ever see you ?´…..and he says ´Well, all I know is I gotta go out and I gotta knock around and I gotta see what´s wrong…..and I gotta see if there´s something that I can do about it to make it right and you´ll see me, Mama…..because at night I´ll be in, I´ll be in the darkness that surrounds you when you´re sleeping and you´ll hear me in men´s voices when they´re yelling ´cause they´re angry and when they´re happy ´cause they found work…´ll hear me in the way that kids sound when they come in and they know that there´s food on the table and that, and that they´re safe…..that they´re safe….. you´ll see me, Mama´….and he disappears off into the darkness and the next scene is the Joads….heading up north looking for work and the father says ´Well, we lost Tommy now, what are we gonna do ?´….and the Ma just says ´Well, we´re gonna keep on going´….so this is a song I guess about…..that mystery, how people hold that faith….how they hold that hope no matter what…..not because they have to….´´

20.03.96 Dublin, Ireland, intro to ´This Hard Land´
´´Thank you….thank you very much…..alright…..this is a song about faith, hope, love, brotherhood, sisterhood….every Western I ever saw, all rolled into one….the possibility of some hard, strained community (chuckles) if you fight for it….´´

20.03.96 Dublin, Ireland, intro to ´Galveston Bay´
´´Thank you….uh….this is, uh….we were up in Belfast last night….very powerful….uh….this is a song I guess about small decisions that, that change the world, a small part…..uh, based on some incidents that happened in the Gulf Coast of Texas in the mid-80´s, at the, uh….. end of….the Vietnam War there were a lot of Vietnamese refugees that came into the Gulf Coast….and there was a a lot of tension…..they went into the fishing industry and there was a lot of tension and a big deal of violence between the…..Vietnamese fishermen and the Texas fishermen….this is called ´Galveston Bay´….´´

Compiled by : Johanna Pirttijärvi

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