Thursday, September 05, 2013
Concerning Beaver Nelson
Via the joys of Laity Lodge, I've had the deep pleasure of coming to know Beaver Nelson in recent years. When we first got to talking, it was as if a few close friends had taken the time to compile a few of our rarer enthusiasms (Evelyn Underhill and Walt Simonson's Beta Ray Bill, for instance) just to see what we would do when confronted with someone with whom we shared one weird delight after another. After a quick succession of "Me too" clicks involving Townes Van Zandt, John Byrne, and Cormac McCarthy, I realized I'd met someone who'd probably enjoy Todd Greene's envisioning of the chorus to Steve Earle's "Copperhead Road" inexplicably and suddenly sung to the tune of Lindsey Buckingham's "Holiday Road." Beaver laughed hard and took a moment to describe what he imagined Earle might do to me if I ever attempted such a thing in his presence.
This was all before I heard him sing and began to take in his complete works, a very present help in my hand-in-face days of bringing my dissertation to relative completion. The songs are all lyrical shots at hoped-for-coherence, somehow simultaneously disarmingly funny and self-deprecatingly moving. They let the air in unexpectedly. You don't see it coming.
After years of telephone conversations on the subjects of Steve Ditko, Elvis Costello, Magneto, and the self-understanding of Jesus, we've finally arranged an evening, THIS SUNDAY, when Beaver will bring his song and dance to our backyard. I invite any and everyone in range to come around. Consider bringing a little food or beverage you'd be willing to share along, maybe a lawn-chair or a blanket, and perhaps a little something to put into a tip jar. But if the thought of any such items serves to dissuade, wipe it from your mind. We've got you covered.
Reach me by e-mail OR hit me on the book of faces for details.