Jazz Man

It was a rock and roll night in Gloucester last night. We went to the Rhumb Line to see Fly Amero and David Brown play.
Oh, Susie Q, Oh, Susie Q Oh, Susie Q, Baby I love you, Susie Q
They're playing Suzie Q, and a friend leans over and says, "This song captures the essence of romance."
I like the way you walk I like the way you talk I like the way you walk I like the way you talk, Susie Q
For a flash, I thought he was joking. But I turned and watched Fly as he sang - raw, aggressive, lustful - he captured the essential drive that makes a man want a woman. It's not all of romance, but it is the flame.
Well, say that you'll be true well, say that you'll be true, Well, say that you'll be true and never leave me blue, Susie Q
The lyrics mean nothing without the delivery - but with it, they are powerful. The simplicity of the words, a quality that makes them appear, at first glance, as childish and without meaning, is deceptive - it is this sleekness that allows them to penetrate. Although I've heard it as much as the next guy, I was really hearing the song for the first time.
Well, say that you'll be mine well, say that you'll be mine, Well, say that you'll be mine, baby all the time, Susie Q
I started thinking about the age of the people in the room. Mostly people in their fifties and sixties. As were the players! There were some kids there, but they were the minority. After the Rhumb Line, we'll be listening to Suzie Q at the old age home! And Fly will still be great on the vocals!
Next I'm thinking about politics. This is John McCain's room. He was the aging rocker. A run it straight up the middle guy who takes no prisoners. Barack is the jazz guy, who dances around the beat and uses the melody as a reference point, not a bible, caring little about the hook. He is Randy Moss, pulling the ball out of the air with one hand while dancing for more yards than he deserves. No wonder liberals are so thrilled - the impossible has happened. The Jazz guy beat the Rocker!
MORAN: Is there a difference between black patriotism and white patriotism? OBAMA: No, I don't think so. I mean, what I think is that the African-American community is much more familiar with some of the darker aspects of American life and American history and so is less -- here's a good way to describe it. You know, I think that they understand much less as a marching band playing John Philip Sousa and they understand America much more as a jazz composition, with blue notes. And I think those are different things. And so the African-American community can express great rage and anger about this country and love it all the same, in a way that probably is less familiar to white America.
George W. is a rocker. White guy with no rhythm dancing on the bar that his daddy owns. Rock was once the music of the popular culture. Now, it's a niche. This shift provides the best parallel for understanding how mainstream Republican politics have to change moving forward. We'll still be the guy you give the ball to at the goal line to plow through the middle for a yard or two, but we have to learn to tiptoe up the sidelines as well.

Note: The great music last night included David Mattacks on drums and my old friend Wolf Ginandes on bass. Thanks guys!