Sunday, December 7, 2008
More on the 2008 Oxford American Southern Music Issue
Part of why I love the OA Southern Music Issue (go get it) besides my presence in it is that the accompanying CD provides a musical corrective, throws a knotted rope down the rabbit hole so I may climb out and see the sun. For instance: Bobby Charles (lala). He's one of those semi-generic names I've heard hundreds of times but have never been exactly sure who he was until now. One of a million chicken-fried soul-rock casualties that you need to hear at least once in order to be right with the Creator.
Ramsay Midwood (lala) has not been featured in one of these, but should be, and I tried, and that is one of the ancillary benefits of the Music Issue - it leads people to pull out their hidden musical treasures to show to company. Ramsay Midwood has only two CDs, each of which I've brought at least twice and lost to the cd players of others or to wherever precious things go. This might be the lesser of the two, but only by a margin equal in width to the gap under your psychic screen door underwhich lizards and mosquitoes gain entry to your psychic house proper. Bur if you only need to hear one song, it would be "Jesus is #1"
Nor is John Lee Hooker in the issue, for everyone knows John Lee Hooker, and if they don't , they should. But the OA Music Issue sends you back to the rootsiest ends of your collection, if only to prove you can roll with them. I'd be hard pressed to name my favorite John Lee Hooker album, but It Serves You Right to Suffer (lala) has the best title of any album ever.
The wonderful and more obscure Furry Lewis (lala), however, is covered therein.
I'm offering all this not just because I want to brag about being in this magazine, but because I think it really is one of the best things of its kind. And because this blog is a Blogger blog, and Blogger is owned by Google, this mention comes up toward the top in a search for the issue, and it can use all the help it can get with marketing.
I looked at the letters in the sport issue last year to see if there was a mention of my Daniel Johnston article for the 2007 music issue, and two of the letters expressed a desire to never hear Daniel Johnston again. I figured that my contribution of The Residents would be easily providing the weirdest thing in this issue as well, but that honor belongs to unstoppable hotness of Elton and Betty White.