Saturday, July 24, 2010

From The Archives: Jackson Browne and the California Myth

One of the first to try and make a career out of hanging around other people while doing nothing: Jackson Browne. It wasn’t until the late 60s that it became possible to seriously think you could get away with it (Southern California had copious amounts of weed and cocaine amongst the hippie/music fringe types). Who needed a job when it was sunny?

But then, who wants to listen to anyone’s constant personal diary, especially when it’s set to such uninspiring music? America’s youth lost 10 years of their lives listening to Browne’s and James Taylor’s navel-gazing drivel. He couldn’t even make his best song a hit; had to let those flannel-shirted idiots The Eagles smooth it out for national consumption.

I saw Browne live in 1976. Even then he was the dullest headline performer I’d ever seen (out of 800 concerts). Lawyers In Love- the title says it all- you knew that would be a real sad-ass album before even hearing a note of it. In 2008, I thought I would give him one last chance and bought Solo Acoustic, Volume 2. This CD is so God-awful sleepy, I almost lost consciousness while trying to listen to it. I want to give him a little slack because he has been on the right side of most political issues of our day, but I’m sorry, this is strictly a musical critique. If you want to listen to a good singer/songwriter, try Fred Neil, Townes Van Zandt, Nick Drake, Kevin Ayers, John Hyatt, or Stephen Merritt (for starters).

Joni was right- he’s a loser; stay away from him.
-Jim Webb


missy missy said...

Are you suggesting I listen to John Hiatt? Or has some other musician approximated his name?

Michael Mooney said...

Absolutely correct, Myssy Myssy, yt's just that we don't lyke the letter 'i'.

Alternatively, Jim may be referring to the late great bluesman/hotel magnate Johnny "Grand" Hyatt.

Next month we'll be discussing Steve Marriott, the Ritz Brothers, Hilton Valentine, the Four Seasons, and Joe Bob La Quinta. Stay tuned.

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