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.

Tuesday, February 22

J.J. Krupert Top 13 Countdown – January ’11 #3: “Central Park West” by John Coltrane

A good road dog is hard to find, a dude or ol' lady you can just jump in a ride with no real direction but general, head out into an early weekend, and wander through shit towns and cheap hotels, looking for whatever might have been calling you in that direction, and get back by work on Monday, maybe Tuesday. I haven't had a weekend like that in a while. Me and my boy Boogie Brown had some epic trips out to the midwest, to see death match wrestling tournaments and four-day long demolition derbies. My ol' lady and me, that used to be our main activity was to wander the weekend away, staying in crappy hotels and vibing on the strange sights and sounds all around. Solidified why I love her because she is me, we have the same soul, just in different bodies, that luckily are sexually attracted at each other like universal magnetics.
My man Boomer and me had a couple of jaunts that were memorable enough. They always seemed to involve strange encounters with crackheads though. I have been blessed/cursed with something we call the retardar, which attracts whatever person has some sort of strange story to tell, he finds me, and tells me. That always happens. Boomer has the same thing, except with crackheads. But we had a weekend wander where we drank beers at a dirt track and ended up closing down a bar by the hotel in some dead end North Carolina town, and my retardar kicked in and we had people buying us beers and Mexicans in soccer jerseys kept playing AC/DC on the jukebox and some drunk redneck dude was on the bar dancing to David Allan Coe and the bartendress seemed to be sweet on me or Boomer or us or whatever, and when her boyfriend showed up and the bar closed down, they shut the shades and we were allowed to be part of the select few who could keep on drinking. That's quality friend-making. Rest of the night involved laughing at crackheads sneaking around the building to rip each other off from the ninja spy confines of the shut down swimming pool.
Next day, I don't know, we were gonna go to some bullshit wresting thing at an armory in some other shithole North Carolina town, and it looked all burned out, like they had a Southern Krystalnacht and set half the town on fire, and it looked pretty dead end in every direction, except somewhere had to go out, didn't it? We couldn't find no hotels, so we pulled into one of those awesome country/city southern convenience stores that always have the best fucking fried chicken on earth, and sell crazy amounts of peach blunt wrappers, and I asked for directions to any sort of hotel. The lady looked at me like I was crazy, and pointed us all the way back up to Rockingham, which seemed a little out of the way, because a town with this many buildings clustered together, no matter how boarded up and run down, had to have at least one hotel. Right? No. So off to Roxboro it was.
On our way out the convenience store parking lot, stopping to let some gully ass dude in a Caprice plenty of room for entry, there's a roadside marker, slightly bent from one too many drunk drivers, in the most anonymous and perfectly inglorious place ever. It said, to paraphrase, "One block from here John Coltrane was born back in the day." Hamlet, North Carolina. Blew my fucking mind, the greatest jazz wacko there ever once was came from the polluted loins of Piedmont North Carolina. But it made perfect sense.
This "Central Park West" for me is the greatest jazz song ever made, and maybe the saddest song ever made. It's one of those songs that's so fucking sad, it makes me feel good when I listen to it. I don't think most humans really have a clue as to how to capture emotions with sounds that aren't words. Words are easier, because people understand the associated meanings of all the parts. But with straight sound, where you're digging into something that was in us before words came about? No, most people can't do it. They just learn how to pluck strings or push piano keys or whatever. If you played this song for cavemen chewing on raw Manchurian Beast meat in a fire-lit cavern, they would get it. In fact, I hope when I am King of the Universe, they let me go through the microfiche of the future, and I can look at when the earth people all blow themselves up in a fabulous frenzy of philosophical goatheadedness, and when all that is blown up and busted down to ash and rubble with the charred refuse-to-die-easies staggering around for a few months before the nuclear ash chokes the last of us away, that they let me listen to this song with headphones on while I'm listening to it. I've not gone there yet, so I'm not sure if they allow headphones and music devices in the microfiche of the future room in Universal Heaven or not. We'll see.
In case you were wondering, the hotel in Rockingham was nasty as fuck, looked like the door had been kicked in multiple times and there were bootholes in the wall by my bed as well. Boomer ran into some crackheads somewhere, and I went to the Huddle House to get us some food. The waitress was one of those sweet sad short-haired hard life ladies with eyes that put cobra clutches on my heart. The cook was a wigger dude who was drawling something about peaches and cream, and she rolled her eyes and walked off, and he looked at me and said, "She like that." It was perfect. The whole fucking thing was perfect. That's how you get to be John Coltrane. You steep yourself heavily in all that perfect, and then it just flows right back out of you.
STEAL “Central Park West”
Murky muzik!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That's so fucking funny. I wish I could listen to all this music you put on this blog. I have retardar but it doesn't get results as cool as yours. I have a crackhead in my house up north. Sketchy