Track Of The Day

So I’m driving down 3rd Street talking to Eric about his Mac.  God, Apple might have only 4% market share, but everybody seems to be switching.  When I had tea with Lea this afternoon at Elixir there were three surfers.  Two PowerBooks and an iBook.

And when our conversation was done, as traffic started to get heavy around La Cienega, I fired up the XM.

I’m not the biggest Buddy Guy fan.  Oh, he was ripping it up, live at XM, and I was ENJOYING it, but then he started playing this acoustic figure.

Only one problem, it wasn’t Buddy Guy.

As I started to reevaluate, wonder if I’d unfairly overlooked Mr. Guy, the guy playing started to sing.  And it was clear, it was Stevie Ray Vaughan.

You know terrestrial radio is in trouble when Robert Hilburn takes potshots.  I mean who can listen to classic rock radio.  Does ANYBODY need to hear "Won’t Get Fooled Again" again?  And, if they play Stevie Ray, it’s "Little Wing".  It’s never "Life By The Drop".  They don’t play this kind of stuff on terrestrial radio.  Stuff that’s not in-your-face, that doesn’t square with the faux sunny personality of the deejay.

Have you HEARD "Life By The Drop"?

I haven’t.  Sure, it’s on Stevie’s big posthumous record "The Sky Is Crying".  But, back in the early nineties, the only way to hear a track was on the radio or if you BOUGHT it.  And I couldn’t afford to buy everything.

Oh, it starts off with a Buddy Guy blues figure.  Got to give the deejay credit for the segue.  But then "Life By The Drop" starts to rock, it starts to SWING!

And what’s further amazing is, it’s ACOUSTIC!

Oh, you can imagine being in a club.  With just a lone guy on stage, knocking you out.  The rhythm Stevie Ray pulls out of his guitar is stunning.  It cuts to your core just like a look across the room to a member of the opposite sex, when you lock eyes, when it’s just the two of you, when you know something’s going to happen.

That’s what’s funny about the blues.  For down music, it’s incredibly optimistic.

Today I wasn’t converted into a Buddy Guy supporter.  But I was closed by Stevie Ray Vaughan.  His loss is a tragedy.  Because he won’t be making MORE magical tracks like "Life By The Drop".

Then again, I’ve got the albums he did record to peruse now.

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