Story 2005-05-05 Oakland, CA

05.05.05 Oakland, CA, intro to ´´My Beautiful Reward´´
´´Thank you and good evening….thanks….I have a few requests, one, make sure all those damn cellphones are turned off so I don´t have to sweep through the audience with my chainsaw, please, I could use, uh, as much quiet as I can get, don´t clap along ´cause you´re gonna throw off my already tenuous sense of time, enjoy yourselves….´´

05.05.05 Oakland, CA, intro to ´´Long Time Comin´´´
´´Thank you, thank you and good evening….(?) this is a song I wrote a while back, it found a home on this new record that I just put out that will, uh, I believe it´s gonna be on sale in Dunkin´ Donuts all across the United States….so, uh, but, uh, I wrote this kind of about having kids and you kind of go through three stages with your kids, the first stage is when they´re little, they think you´re perfect….then fourteen years later, then you´re an idiot…. there is a stage in the middle somewhere, sort of transtionary stage between ´less than perfect´ and ´tolerable idiot,´ I´m not sure which one (chuckles) but you always think you´re not gonna make the same mistakes your folks made and….you know, everybody´s got their complaints, I´ve made a career out of mine (chuckles) and uh (chuckles) it served me well, it served me correct….T-Bone Burnette used to say that all rock´n´roll is ´DADDY!!!!´ but uh (chuckles) but uh (chuckles) but, uh, you know, kids come along and you do get a second chance and I´ve been telling the folks it´s sort of bad enough when I see ´em acting like me, when I see ´em acting like my father, I know that I let one slip through there somehow (chuckles) so, uh, anyway, I set this one in the west, which was, when my kids were young, we lived, lived out here and it was a nice re-birth for us and, uh, it´s called ´Long Time Comin´….´´

05.05.05 Oakland, CA, intro to ´´Silver Palomino´´
´´This is, uh….when you´re a kid, the loss of your parents is about as frightening as it gets…. uh, I had a young friend passed away and left two boys, I wrote this song for ´em, ´bout a horse that comes out of the mountains at night, a boy loses his mom and views her spirit in this horse, this is called ´Silver Palomino´….´´

05.05.05 Oakland, CA, intro to ´´The River´´
´´Thank you, uh, when I, uh, first records, I didn´t write many love songs, uh….I guess I just wasn´t feeling that much love, but, uh, I, I really kind of started writing songs about men and women I guess around 1987 so that made 37 years old and, uh, on ´Tunnel Of Love´ but, uh, I went back and I looked and I said ´Well, yeah, I must´ve written´ so I found that I did actually write a bunch of love songs but I kind of hid them and, uh, I probably hid ´em ´cause I always remember my dad, uh, you know, my mother used to have the radio on in the, in the kitchen every morning and she would have all of the, the Top-40 on, the Top-40 at the time was filled with doowop music, which is just one of the most beautifully sung music and most romantic music that´s ever been written, I just saw one of these PBS-things on Channel 13 where they get all the groups back together and they had a whole doowop thing and, and it was amazing to watch the guys come up there, 60, 70 years old, and open their mouths and (lets out a short, high note) that real high sound would come out and, uh, it was such a beautiful and pure sound and it was filled with so, so many ecstasies of, of love and, and, and serious, serious ´50s-style horniness, you know (chuckles) but, uh, uh, (?) in the morning and my mother would get all transfixed and ´Oh, that´s a lovely song, that´s my favorite´ and my dad, I remember he said ´Bruce, love songs are a government conspiracy….and don´t you forget it….that it´s a, it´s a plot to keep everybody getting married and, uh, paying taxes,´ uh ….of course….of course, you know, of course he was right so I didn´t write any love songs (chuckles) but I did hide some, I did hide some…..´´

05.05.05 Oakland, CA, intro to ´´Two Faces´´
´´Thank you….thank you….(?)….oh, give me a G-harp, got a G-harp?….I know we got one…. we got ´em all, folks, we got ´em in every key….we do this professionally, we got ´em around here….we got ´em in G, right? (chuckles)….´´

05.05.05 Oakland, CA, intro to ´´Part Man Part Monkey´´
´´Thank you….thanks, you could, uh, you can kind of (?) that clapping, you know, when the song starts if you happen to recognise it now…it´s, uh, I know, I know it and I guess maybe you heard it before….it´s kind of a hack thing at this point, it´s been done, it´s been done….so if you, you know, if another song comes up and you happen to know, just (crowd starts laughing) sit there….everybody just go like that, it´ll get to me, alright, it´ll get to me….I feel like I´m in Vegas when I hear that clapping when I hear clapping in front of the song, I want to immediately stop and play something else….(starts the harmonica and guitar intro)…. evolution….a big debate on evolution still going on….the President says jury´s out….. evolution is just very iffy, very, very iffy….and personally I think the President believes in evolution but of course he can´t say he does…he didn´t get put with the monkey-vote and uh ….but he´s been around the block enough to….but he´s just doing what he has to do, you know, so he can do what he wants to do….just like a lot of folks (some applauds) no, please, no syncophantic applause either…uh….now, uh, Karl Rowe, I know he believes in evolution …but, no….but, uh….I do know he believes in Satan also so that´s, but, uh (some starts to applaud) no, no applause, please….I don´t wanna feel like I´m preaching to the converted, that´s pretty hack (chuckles) I got a lot of nasty letters during the election and those are the ones I prefer….lets you know you´re striking a chord… favorite was, uh, a couple of boxes of smashed records and a dead chicken….I thought that was a nice touch…..but where´d they find those records? (?)….anyway, if ´Inherit The Wind´ came out today, Spencer Tracy-movie, they´d probably picket the theaters over that thing and Spencer Tracy would be derived as a devil´s tool….uh, or they´d just test it for some Evangelical groups and change the ending….´Quest For Fire´ - that would never get made today (chuckles) I´m old, man, nobody´s seen these movies but me (chuckles) I know there´s some old folks there (?) (laughs)….
(….) We´ve come a long way….we´re going back….´´

05.05.05 Oakland, CA, intro to ´´All The Way Home´´
´´Uh, this record, this cut on the record´s got a little band playing with it, uh….I´m gonna handle it all right now….´´

05.05.05 Oakland, CA, intro to ´´Nebraska´´
´´I wrote this song figuring that everybody knows what it feels like to be condemned….´´

05.05.05 Oakland, CA, intro to ´´Reno´´
´´Here´s a love song about not being able to handle the real thing….uh, trying something else and that don´t work out so good either (chuckles) it´s called ´Reno´….´´

05.05.05 Oakland, CA, intro to ´´Racing In The Street´´
´´Thank you, I´ve been, uh, I spent my life…I´ve watched these Monte Hellman, these Monte Hellman-pictures, Monte Hellman was a Los Angeles director in the ´70s, he directed a picture called ´Two-Lane Blacktop´ that had, uh (some people applaud) yeah, alright, there´s some film-buffs out there (chuckles) had James Taylor and Dennis Wilson star in it, the only time they ever acted and they were fantastic and, uh, Warren Oates, Warren Oates is in all Monte Hellman-pictures and Warren Oates is like one of the great sort of undiscovered, he´s just, he´s just, he´s just incredible in this picture called ´Two-Lane Blacktop,´ there´s another picture called ´Cockfighter,´ there´s another one called ´The Shooting,´ which I´m, uh, and they´re just, uh, they´re, they´re amazing pictures so, uh….I´ll send this one out to Monte Hellman tonight….wherever he may be….´´

05.05.05 Oakland, CA, intro to ´´Jesus Was An Only Son´´
´´Thank you, I was, uh, I was raised Catholic so, uh, therefore Jesus is my homeboy and uh ….I wrote this song, kind of another song about mothers and sons on this record and I was just trying to think of Jesus as a son….and, uh….the idea of the choices that you make and how it´s the things we give up when we make our choices that give those choices meaning…. uh….parts of life that we´re not gonna live so maybe something else will live or….let me just sing it here, this is called ´Jesus Was An Only Son,´ now, of course Jesus had a lot of earthly brothers and sisters but not on this day….
(….) At His mother´s feet….I think when you´re a parent, the thing that, the first shock you have is how there isn´t anything you wouldn´t do to protect your kids….it´s kind of sudden…. all of a sudden the world is revolving around something else….than you (chuckles) it takes some getting used to (chuckles)….
(….) shall pierce your dreams this night….I always figured that whatever divinity we can lay claim to is hidden somewhere deep in the core of our humaness so you gotta figure He was thinking….´Galilee is pretty nice this time of year….there´s a little bar down there, I could manage the place, Mary Magdalene could tend bar….we could have us some kids and do the preaching on the weekends….you could get to feel the sun on your face….and the air in your lungs….´´

05.05.05 Oakland, CA, intro to ´´Leah´´
´´Well, we all carry, uh….the seeds of our destruction around with us, as long as, as well as the seeds of our creativity so this is a song about a guy just, just coming down on the right side of that equation….uh, the song´s called ´Leah,´ which I stole from a Roy Orbison song ….about a pearldiver, that I liked, but then a fellow told me that Leah has a pretty prominent role in the Bible and was quite a hot gal….so, uh, I was glad to hear that….anyway….´´

05.05.05 Oakland, CA, intro to ´´The Hitter´´
´´Thanks, so this is, uh, this next song, I guess this is the, uh, this is the flipside….it´s a story about a young kid, uh….who gets in trouble, leaves home, goes down to New Orleans, becomes a fighter, becomes quite a champion and, uh, shorts himself there in the end so…. the whole song is a song about….it´s a song he has with his mother, he comes back through town towards the end of his life and has this entire conversation with his mother through a locked door….Freud (chuckles) where are you?….´´

05.05.05 Oakland, CA, intro to ´´Matamoros Banks´´
´´Thank you….(?) on the Tom Joad-tour a song called ´Across The Border,´ I wrote this song shortly, shortly after I wrote that one, it´s kind of a sequel and uh….the story is similar: a man makes the same journey and is fuelled by the same hopes and love for his partner and his family, his children, in search of something a little bit better, a chance to send some money back home and uh….doesn´t make it across the river, so there´s hundreds of people each year that die just trying to get into the United States, they die in the rivers and they die in the deserts and, uh, in the mountains, uh, we are sadly in need of a humane immigration policy (crowd applauds) so this is a song, I write the song backwards, it begins kind of looking down on the body in the river, the trip across the desert, the man standing on the banks about to dive in, this is called ´Matamoros Banks´….´´

05.05.05 Oakland, CA, intro to ´Land Of Hope And Dreams´´
The song is dedicated to Oakland´s People´s Grocery, according to the Backstreets Magazine.
[the songs following ´Johnny 99´ are missing from my source tape.]

Compiled by : Johanna Pirttijärv

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