Story 2005-05-17 Philadelphia, PA

17.05.05 Philadelphia, PA, intro to ´´Black Cowboys´´
´´Thank you….thanks and good evening again….how´re we doing here, huh, Philly? (cheers) yeah….I feel like I grew up in that alley back there, it was a serious dejavu, it was kind of scary (chuckles) but uh….anyway, wrote a lot of, uh….playing a lot of stuff from Devils & Dust tonight, which, uh (people clap) thank you, will be available very soon in your local Dunkin´ Donuts and Krispy Kreme shops….I got a hell of a deal worked out with those guys (chuckles) and wrote a lot of songs about mothers and sons on this record, which I hadn´t done that much before but, uh…..and what happens when that bond gets severed….this is a song, uh….I guess, uh, we kind of triage our citizens so we decide whose dreams are worth a shot at living and whose can die and that´s the price of doing business, this is, uh, there´s a great book about kids in the intercity by Jonathan Kozol called Amazing Grace (?) and, uh, this is ´Black Cowboys´….´´

17.05.05 Philadelphia, PA, intro to ´´The Iceman´´
´´In honor of….the fabulous Tower Theater I´m gonna do….something here that´s, uh….this is a song I cut for Darkness on the Edge of Town….but, uh, it didn´t, didn´t make it on the record and I´ve never played it so I´m gonna give it a shot (cheers) might be one of the stinkers we left off, you know (?)(chuckles) wait till the end (chuckles) alright, let´s see….´´

17.05.05 Philadelphia, PA, after ´´Incident on 57th Street´´
´´Sit down and take it easy….I had it, I had it right up to these last few notes (chuckles)….´´

17.05.05 Philadelphia, PA, intro to ´´Part Man Part Monkey´´
´´Evolution (people clap) let´s hear it for evolution (cheers) I´ve got some bad news for you ….the President says the jury´s out on evolution….that´s right….very, very iffy, evolution….I was kind of counting on it myself….can´t be done any more…now, right now in Kansas, 80 years after the Scopes´ Monkey Trial, they´re rethinking the whole evolution thing as far as it goes with the school….and uh….does Dover, Pennsylvania mean anything to you? (not much response) it´s happening right here in your backyard, folks (chuckles)….now in New Jersey we believe in evolution….it´s our only hope…..and personally I think that the President believes in evolution too but he can´t say he does because the monkey-vote didn´t put him in the office (people clap)(?) no applause, please, it makes me feel like I´m preaching to the converted (chuckles)….now….Inherit the Wind, the old Spencer Tracy movie about the Scopes´ Monkey Trial (one person claps) you´re dating yourself….it´s just me and you, everybody else is going….yeah, Inherit the Wind, I don´t know….they couldn´t make that today, they can´t make the Flintstones today….it´s the whole neanderthal setting…´s too controversial….not to mention the whole Barney-Fred-relationship, you know….so…..
(….) We´ve come a long way, baby, and we´re going back….´´

17.05.05 Philadelphia, PA, intro to ´´Maria´s Bed´´
´´This is a song now about the, uh, the (?), the pleasures, the fabulous….who was that man without the guitar? (cheers) uh….the ecstasies of love…..´´

17.05.05 Philadelphia, PA, intro to ´´Silver Palomino´´
´´Thanks….wrote this, uh….about a, uh, close friend of mine….passed away and left two sons, that´s every parent´s nightmare and, uh…..this is a song I wrote for them, was, uh, about a kid who loses his mom and views her spirit in this horse that comes out of the mountains at night, this is called ´Silver Palomino´….´´

17.05.05 Philadelphia, PA, intro to ´´Reno´´
´´This is a song about, uh….love and not being able to handle the real thing…..and, uh, not being able to handle the wrong things so well either….this is called ´Reno´….´´

17.05.05 Philadelphia, PA, intro to ´´Wreck on the Highway´´
´´Yeah, I will now, uh, bring out the magic piano (?) need a little ´Man at work´-sign for this, we like to, uh, you know, what can I say? I don´t have any jokes but, uh, this is, uh….it´s not, uh, oh, there it is (chuckles)….yeah, we didn´t figure this out in the rehearsal….it´s ready, it´s ready….(?)….´´

17.05.05 Philadelphia, PA, intro to ´´Jesus Was an Only Son´´
´´Thank you, this is….I was brought up Catholic so, uh….Jesus is my homeboy….and uh…. that´s about the size of it, you know….I left Catholic school in the 8th grade and my mother made me go to Catechism class for the first year of my freshman….Catechism class was alright, you know, it was kind of Monday night after school (?) fooling around and, uh….and after that that was kind of it but…..I still kind of keep tabs on how the old team is doing, you know….I, uh….it´s like a ballclub, you know, it´s like….they make those big highend trades, you know, where the new Pope comes in and you´re hoping for a better season and the whole thing but, uh….(?) you just watch, you just, you know, I´m kind of, because my relatives were solid, you know, churchgoers, you know, they would still, they´d kind of drag me down, like the Al Pacino-style, they keep dragging me back, you know, and, uh….so I ended up going to the, back to the convent where I was tortured as a child and uh (chuckles) (?) now they give me, now I get free beer if I go there…..I get free beer and they let me watch the ballgame, you know, and, uh, uh, it´s kind of a respite, you know, your mind goes, it´s either that or the strip club, you know what I mean (?) but uh….at any rate, uh, I wrote this song, my, my music is really, it´s pretty filled with a lot of religious imagery and, uh….. it´s the way it´s gonna go (chuckles) that ain´t gonna change (chuckles) because, uh….you know, that was, uh, it worked (chuckles) all that brainwashing but, uh, uh (chuckles) uh, this was a song, I was interested in, in the relationship between Jesus and Mary as a mother and a son, on the three or four songs I wrote on this record ´bout mothers and sons, one of the biggest images is, is the pieta, which is Jesus in Mary´s arms after He´s come down from the cross, a sense of a mother as a constant caretaker and….in life and, and even in death, uh….. and how your desire to protect your children is so, is so intense and so great….and uh….so I was sort of imagining Jesus as somebody´s boy, this is called ´Jesus Was an Only Son´….
(….) As he lay reading the psalms of David at his mother´s feet….I say your desire to protect your children is the first thing that….deeply shocks you (chuckles) when the kids come along ….how bottomless that feeling is…..A mother prays ´Sleep tight, my child, sleep well, for I´ll be at your side. That no shadow, no darkness, no tolling bell shall pierce your dreams this night´….I always figured….our choices are kind of….they gain their value by the things that we sacrifice, you choose something and you give up other things….that´s what gives our choices value and meaning but, so I figured He had to be thinking….´That Galilee is pretty nice this time of year…and that there´s probably a little bar down there that I could manage ….Mary Magdalene could tend the bar….and, uh, we could have some kids….and watch the sun fall on them….you feel the breath in your lungs´….In the garden at Gethsemane….´´

17.05.05 Philadelphia, PA, intro to ´´Leah´´
´´Well, we all cart along with us, uh, the seeds of our destruction, it´s kind of the merry part of the human package, you know (chuckles) along with the seeds that allow us to, uh….if we´re fortunate and thoughtful, build things but, uh, that´s kind of a tug-of-war that can go on for a long time (chuckles) this is a song about a guy that just figures out how to come down on the right side of that equation…just barely….this song´s called ´Leah,´ I took the title from a Roy Orbison song….Roy Orbison´s song was about a pearl diver, I´ve been telling the folks that Roy was one of those guys….could write about, could sing about anything, he just had a voice that made everything sound believable, he had this song about the pearl diver, the pearl diver dives into the ocean to get the pearl for a girl (?) a pretty hokey bit of business but he made it so beautiful….and I got to meet him and I got to know him a little bit before he died and I went to his house one afternoon and, uh….(?) ´I got this new song about windsurfing´ ….´Windsurfing, oh´….I didn´t say that but that´s what I was thinking….and, uh, I was thinking ´You can sing about a lot of things, you could certainly sing about surfing….but windsurfing, that´s, that´s, that´s the no-go area, that´s….it can´t be done, that´s all there is to it, I don´t care who you are…..and, uh….you know, and so on his next record came out this, this beautiful song called ´Windsurfer´….and uh, I remember, it, it almost made me wanna windsurf (chuckles) but, uh….you gotta have faith….that´s what this is about too (chuckles) …´´

17.05.05 Philadelphia, PA, intro to ´´The Hitter´´
´´This is, uh….kind of the flipside of that story, I guess, you can, uh….you can lose it as, as easy as you can find it, if you can find it at all in the first place….uh….a song about a….about a young kid that gets in trouble and leaves home and, uh….becomes this champion, comes back home towards the end of his life and has this conversation with his mother through a locked door…uh….Freud, wherever you are, you should be smiling….but uh (chuckles) but uh, in my house we, as a child I felt both the, sort of the crushing hand of fate as well as fortune and, uh, they don´t quite cancel each other out….so, uh, this is called ´The Hitter´….´´

17.05.05 Philadelphia, PA, intro to ´´Matamoros Banks´´
´´Thank you, this is a song, uh, I wrote this next song as a sequel to ´Across the Border,´ it was a song I used to end the Tom Joad tour qith and, uh (strums his guitar) there it is, and it, uh….kind of charged the same journey, a man, uh, comes across the desert and across the border looking for, uh, something a little bit better for his, his family and his kids, every year there´s, uh, hundreds of people that die trying to get into the United States, they die, they drown in the rivers and they die in the mountains and they die in the deserts and in the backs of vans and, uh, trailers, they come into the country to work at the toughest jobs that we have here and, uh, rather than vigilantes down along the border, what we need is, uh….the President to have the guts to have a humane immigration policy….so this was, uh….song, I wrote this song backwards from a body at the bottom of a river to a journey across the desert to standing on the banks of Matamoros, which is a town across from Brownsville, Texas, this is called ´Matamoros Banks´….´´

17.05.05 Philadelphia, PA, intro to ´´Land of Hope and Dreams´´ (following ´´Ramrod´´).
´´Yeeha!….shut up, please (chuckles) I wanna send this one out to friends from Philabundance, they´re working here to end hunger in the Delaware Valley…they (?) surplus food and they distribute it to the organizations serving the folks that are struggling out there, Philabundance, if you see ´em on the way out, please, uh, see what you can do for ´em, give ´em a hand, they´re here, uh….in the Philadelphia area doing God´s work so please help….´´

17.05.05 Philadelphia, PA, intro to ´´The Promised Land´´
´´Thank you, I wanna say thanks for coming out to the show tonight….thanks a lot….it´s always nice to be back here at the old Tower and, uh….I also wanna thank youse, you´ve been a lovely and gracious audience, thank you very much…..and uh…..I appreciate having the room to play like this, I, I enjoy it tremendously and uh….couldn´t do it without you so (chuckles) thanks a lot….´´

Compiled by : Johanna Pirttijärvi

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