Date: Fri, 9 Jun 2000 03:07:47 -0400
Subject: (GFR/RK) Re: a completely unlikely event
I was just hanging out the other day, watching the Tribe play on TV when there was a knock on the door. Grumbling at the unmitigated gall that someone would actually show up at my door, I hustled down the hall and opened the 8 foot tall oak door.
"Hi Jim!", replied Mark as he stuck out his right hand, "What's shakin' Mad Dog?" , he continued using my old nickname from my college days.
"Mark!, what in the hell are you doing here?", I replied as I pumped his hand, "Man, it must be a hundred and five out here, come on in."
Mark stepped through the front door and walked down the hall to the family room.
"Can I get you anything to drink? ... How 'bout a beer?", I asked with my hands spread wide.
"Sure, have you got any domestics?"
"Oh you mean, Corona?", I laughed.
"AAKKKK, no I mean Bud, or Miller, or something like that", grimaced Mark.
"How 'bout a Mickey big mouth?", I tested.
"Now your talkin'!", came the reply.
I opened the refrigerator and pulled a Michelob and a Corona out of the frig. I handed Mark the Mick as I opened the Corona.
"How can you drink that goat piss?", Mark lamented, "It's not even an American beer."
"WRONG, beer brain, It IS an American beer. In case you haven't had a geography lesson lately, Mexico is still considered part of North America. Sure, it is the southern part of North America but North America anyway. And besides, where you are sitting used to BE part of Mexico. We're just occupying it temporarily. " , I pontificated.
"Blow me", dead panned Mark.
"Well, I don't have my magnifying glass with me, so I'll pass, THIS TIME", I said laughing. "So what brings you around today?"
"Jim, I always valued your highly intelligent views", (ain't it the truth), "so, I am going to ask you what you think of my tour this year." , Mark asked expectantly.
I took a long, really long, swig of my Corona and set it down. "Well Mark, I haven't actually seen any of your shows. The closest one was in Vegas and it was a shorty. So my opinion is based alot on what others have said. But this is what I will say ... When you were with the reunion tour of GFR you guys had one of the top grossing acts in the country. No small feat for a band that hadn't played together in some 20 odd years. BUT, you played basically the same set list for three friggin' years. Not much variation at all. A guy could put on Capitol Collectors and get basically the same show! I know, the promoters wanted you guys to play the hits and frankly I don't blame them, it was very successful. With your show this year, however, you are playing some stuff we haven't heard in a long time, like 'Comfort Me' and 'Hooked on Love'. Actually, I have never heard you do those live before. That is some flexibility that you don't have with GFR."
Mark considered what I had said and then turned and noticed my Stratocaster sitting on it's guitar stand. "Hey, mind if I play a little?", he asked pointing over his shoulder at the guitar.
"You kiddin' me?, be my guest!", I spat.
Mark ambled over to the Strat and picked it up, "Man, this sure is heavier than my Parker", he threw the strap over his shoulder and pulled a couple of stomp boxes from the side of the amp and my Crybaby Wah Wah pedal. He punched the 'on' button on the Peavey amp and stroked the strings. The off tones sent a shiver up his spine. Luckily there was a tuner near by that he turned on and he began to tune in the instrument. Satisfied now, he tested a couple of chords and stomped on the fuzz box. With the fuzz activated he launched into the intro to "Anybodys Answer". One pump of his right foot and the fuzz was deactivated and he transitioned into the intro to Closer to Home. Using the crybaby, he played around with the intro. Abruptly he stopped and swung into "Voodoo Chille". Hendrix would have been proud as Mark used the WahWah to perfection. "I always wanted to record that, but never got around to it", he explained.
"Mark, why don't you work things out with Mel and Don.", I blurted before I could stop myself.
"Work things out? There nothing wrong actually.", he continued playing.
"What do you mean nothing wrong? I thought you guys had a big falling out?", I said, quoting the 'taken for granted notion'.
"Naaa, not really. You want to know the real reason we broke up the band?",
"Yeah!?, okay, I'll bite, what is the real reason", I said like a good straight man.
"It was Howard Eddy Jr."
"Yep, Howard broke up the band. You see, Howard and Mel wanted to get married and that made Don really jealous! And then after Howard got pregnant with Terry Knights baby, then things really got out of hand!", Mark started laughing uncontrollably, the guitar making alot of wierd sounds in the process.
"Oh Geeez", I said shaking my head.
"Anyway, like I was saying, after Kuch decided to run for congress it was decided to cancel any further tours. Besides, we're all going to work on his campaign!", explained Mark.
"But, I thought you hated all the politicians, now your going to become one yourself!" , I countered.
"Hey, 'know thy enemy', they always say, and It takes one to know one and the skunk smells his own hole first. I'm not sure that the last one is relevant, but it sure it funny!" The beer was having a nice effect. "AAhhh, none of that is true. The real reason the touring stopped is that, I was getting really bored playing the same songs all the time. I would like a little variety. But the promoters wouldn't have any of that."
With that, Mark turned the amp off and put the guitar back on the stand and thanked me for the beer and conversation. "Any time your up in my neck of the country, look me up", he said as he headed for the door.
A few seconds later he was gone. I shrugged and went back to the TV. The Tribe was winning.
One just like the other
Jim's a good mans brother
but is that right?