Thursday, November 29, 2007

Browneian motion

The day before yesterday I was in the library and decided to check out some CDs. I gravitated toward the Bs (not bullshit, but the letter) and got some Jackson Browne and Beatles. What's not to like?

Well, I'll tell ya. In 2002, Browne (unfortunately) issued an album called The Naked ride home. I had sampled some of it from his site at the time and noticed that he had grotesquely written an 8-minute song about (get this) Sergio Leone. Yes, the spaghetti western Sergio Leone. Now I like westerns and I like spaghetti westerns and I like Jackson Browne and I think ole Sergio was a major talent. So I thought I'd actually listen to the whole eight minutes this time. But I found that this song is one of those things, like hard-core pornography and hate speech, which seriously challenges your allegiance to the First Amendment. In fact, it does bear some affinity to these categories: somewhat obscene, like the album's prurient title- and Jackson must have hated us to inflict this stuff on an unsuspecting populace.

Fascinated as I was by the sheer badness and misguidedness of this production, I was distracted as to any possible meaning. But I suppose he was suggesting that once again the bad guys (Americans with their violence as expressed in westerns-"where the killings never cease") have imperialistically corrupted the good guys, in this case civilized Italians. Jackson, let me tell you something. It is almost impossible to corrupt Italians, but not in the sense you may believe. They're already there, and have been for centuries. "Where the killings never cease" is not a description of America, it is a description of the world. And the universality of this fact is the reason why an Italian was able to understand and utilize this genre. Cowboys R Us.

Doctor, my eyes. Doctor, my ears have heard this song. Help!

p.s. The Eggplant is not the alter ego of Daryl Hannah.