RAVEN MACK is a mystic poet-philosopher-artist of the Greater Appalachian unorthodox tradition. He does have an amazing PATREON, but also *normal* ARTIST WEBSITE too.

Friday, February 25

J.J. Krupert Top 13 Countdown - February '11 #12: "House At Pooh Corner (live)" by Loggins & Messina

I will readily admit that Loggins & Messina is the sappiest, easy listening ass music that I proudly pump. The thing is, I don't get into just any Loggins & Messina. I've actually bought a few of their studio albums in the past and absolutely hated it. I think I even got a solo Jim Messina record one time. And we all know how Kenny Loggins turned out. But the On Stage double live LP this track is off of, I don't know, it has just soaked into my soul in some way that I just can't shake.
I grew up with this record being played by my folks, usually loud as fuck on a hungover Sunday morning after they had been out partying, playing poker or Spades, drinking liquor and beer and smoking weed and disappearing into the back room one at a time to shut the door and come out sniffling and wiping their faces with wide-eyed attention. These were great times for me as all the kids were usually allowed free reign to play wild. We might make paper airplanes and have a war with the wasps nest on the front porch where the rule was once you knocked them to the ground with your plane you could stomp them. We might just have straight up stick fights in the back yard (at like midnight, bunch of kids fighting with sticks in the solitary light of one flood light in rural ass back yards... memories). But we'd be doing something, and it would be way past when we should be awake, and inevitably somebody would get fucked up and go crying into the grown folks room, littered with quarters and Miller High Life pony bottles and playing cards, and they'd tell us to go play. Shit man. This was like every weekend when I was a kid, Friday and Saturday night. If my dad did good at the poker table, when we came through town (Farmville), he'd swing through the drive-through at Hardees (unless it was already after 3 in the morning, when they closed) and buy me a biscuit for the ride home. Other times, he'd be extra fucked up, flying down the road, usually we'd be coming from Cumberland County, sometimes Rice, but always a good 40 minute drive or so back to Meherrin, testing his mortality I guess, and I'd lay down in the back seat or slide down onto the floor and just hope to make it home. Really, as a kid it was completely awesome to have that type of freedom on weekends, but looking back, yeah, probably some rough shit for a kid. I wouldn't roll that way with my kids, I know that much.
Anyways, Loggins & Messina's On Stage was a constant fave on the following hungover Sunday mornings, somehow my dad up and at them early as fuck, cooking up breakfast, waking the dead. I'm not sure if he even went to sleep now looking back. I know the crank was nothing that ever came into our house when I was a kid, it was strictly a weekend warrior partying at other folks type of thing. I think that's how my dad rolled even into his later years, which is why once I was grown, and he had a new family, he'd sometimes disappear for three days for the most part.
It's actually pretty fucked up that I've done crank with my own father. Like at the time, you're like, "Haha, this is crazy man, what a crazy thing!" For the most part, when people are immersed uncontrollably in shit, it is a natural reaction to take pride in that shit, and pretend that being a piece of shit is the greatest thing in the world and somehow makes you better than everybody else. It's reverse elitism. "All those hoity-toity uptight motherfuckers, they don't know the real shit. I'm real motherfucker." I've done it myself, many times. It's the source of many many bad tattoos on this earth. But goddamn, how twisted?
I didn't mean for this to get all weird like that, talking about how my childhood might've been fucked up, because really, I don't think about it for the most part. I don't feel victimized or anything. I mean, I'm a fucked up dude, sure, but we all are. I've got enough shit in my brain to work out that's my own fault before I go looking to blame anybody else for how I am.
But Loggins & Messina' On Stage, I don't know, I guess those mornings when there wasn't school on the weekend, when the ol' man was cooking up breakfast, and my mom was cleaning up the house or whatever, it was the most chill ass time, where there felt like a leisurely love in the house, instead of running off to catch a schoolbus or sell a bag of weed or everybody pile into one shitty car to drive all over three goddamned counties to get everybody to work and school on time. So I guess Loggins & Messina's live album associates in my mind with that. Because that's how I feel when we play at our house, cooking breakfast on a Sunday morning, kids running around the house, me and the ol' lady flirting with each other, stealing kisses, making coffee, grabbing eggs out the chicken coop for the freshest omelet possible. It's all love. "Danny's Song" off On Stage is certainly the more loving couple song, but "House At Pooh Corner" really ties it into the kids, ya know? It makes it family, but not in a purposely corny way like putting on a Barbie Princess CD would.
And I guess, completely by accident, my point of all the gibberish is this: we all have fucked up childhoods in one way or another, or at least a lot of us do. All you can do is try and hold onto the good parts of what you were taught, no matter how small or large a part of the overall body of work that is, and let go of the shitty lessons. Let go of that shit. Because if you get too hung up in being proud of being a piece of shit, you'll accidentally raise more little pieces of shit. Call me crazy, but I'd like my kids to end up being better people than me.
STEAL "House At Pooh Corner"
how the hell does "iron" go with "wine"?


rhobertson said...

Great post, as usual. Substitute a Roanoke-Bedford-Rocky Mount triangulation and you pretty much described my childhood. Still haven't quite forgiven my dad for emptying my piggybank for the poker playing, though.

Raven Mack said...

Well, if you were like me, you probably pilfered it back later at some point.
Yeah man, there's something about Southside and Southwest Virginia that's just different than the rest of the world. Like whenever I've gone other places and I get back into that territory, I breath easier, even though I should probably turn the fuck around.

Anonymous said...

I breathe easier too. Especially when its warm coming in off the road at night hit anywhere close to the local counties and something starts creeping in physically all over that's just nice. That girls cool. Besides the obvious its in the bottom of her pants. The foot not the ass

Raven Mack said...

I remember going with my dad to the Big House at the junkyard of people we mutually know, for this or that as probably like a 9 or 10 year old, and going into the room or porch where there was a motorcycle or part of a motorcycle or something (you know how that place was) and lots of easyriders magazine pages laying around and tacked up on the wall. I was corrupted early, and often.

Anonymous said...

Maybe someday ill share my exs mess from there. For him unfortunately he's scarred in a way he hasn't been able to come to terms with yet. Its weird that really I've only dated 3 people and not by plan they and/or their fams are all intricately entwined in that place.

Raven Mack said...

honestly, I'm too connected to that family, multiple generations back, to want to know it probably. man... memories.