Posted tagged ‘jim morrison’

Chopped Liver – Another One Bites The Dust

July 24, 2011

A few months ago I wrote a piece about rock stars dying at the age of 27 (Death Is Not The End) and here we go again – another one.

I guess it’s only coincidence. Or is it? Maybe there is something about the lifestyle or state of mind about that age – maybe the onset of 30 approaching – where you are supposed to have embraced adulthood and left behind your carefree youth. I dunno, it’s just a curious thing. Such great icons too – Hendrix, Morrison, Joplin, Brian Jones, Kurt Cobain and now Amy Winehouse – all, apparently, succumbing to a reckless lifestyle at the tender age of 27.

26-year-old rock stars all over the world are anxiously looking over their shoulders.

And this death of a young woman, apparently unable to face the normality of everyday life, seems to affect people as much, or more perhaps, than the unfathomable cold-blooded mass-murder of dozens of young people trying to embrace life in its fullest form on a holiday island in Norway.

Amy Winehouse. For Ever. R.I.P.

That’s the thing about rock stars like Amy. We watch their lifes unfold in the media. We buy their records. We play their music in our homes, our cars, our parties, our weddings – they become, in effect, part of our extended family, part of our lives. In short – we relate to them as if we know them.

And that, in a nutshell, is why we are affected so much when they die.

But, as I stated in my previous post, alluded to earlier, their music lives on. The image we had of Amy performing at her height is the one we will keep forever. And her music will last for ever – Death is, once again, not the end.

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Chopped Liver – Weird Scenes Inside The Goldmine

June 23, 2011

Ask Jim Morrison – I don’t know what it means either.

Unless my goldmine is my new liver – and the accompanying scar tissue around the entry point to that pot of gold.

If that is the case, then yes, there are some pretty (?) weird things going on. One day itching, another day pain. One day bleeding, another calm. Is it healing? Or not?

After 4 and a half months, should I still be having such scar problems? I wouldn’t have thought so – but who am I?

Still it’s taking my mind off worrying about my blood thinning project. My Warfarin dosage is steadily increasing – about a miligram per week – I’m up to 5mg a day now – had been down 2 (or even one, I think) and still making no inroads into my INR increase – which was 1.4 on last count. It needs to be at least 2.0. I am also administering Tinzaparin injections to my stomach on a daily basis – grief – you should see the state of my tummy. There was a time I was concerned about my wee boy seeing my naked torso – I am now too scared to even peak at it myself!

Jim's looking well.

On a positive note – and hey, we must always stay positive peeps, I was out and about yesterday meeting a lot of people, some of whom I hadn’t seen since before my transplant – and they all said how well I looked – so that’s something. I am a firm believer that you are as your are perceived to be. And if I am perceived to be looking well – then I am looking well. So there.

Chopped Liver – Death Is Not The End

May 24, 2011

It’s a momentous day. A day for rejoicing. A day for happiness and song. And reflection

It’s Bob Dylan’s 70th birthday.

Bob Dylan has been, for me, the most influential artist of my life. I’ve listened to his music for 35 years. I’ve read countless books about him. I’ve seen him a number of times in concert.

He is, as a human being, one deserving to reach this milestone and still be performing to adoring fans on his Never Ending Tour around the world.

I say, as a human being.

However as an artist? As a Rock Icon? As a historical monument of greatness?

This I want to explore. It may be the wrong day to explore this. It may well be the exactly the right day. So I’m going ahead.

Would it have been better for Bob Dylan (the artist, folk/rock icon, poet) not Bob Dylan, human being, to have died back in the mid 60’s?

Let me ask you this. What do you think of when you hear the name Jimi Hendrix? A young vibrant exciting, amazing guitarist playing to ecstatic audiences at Woodstock or Montreaux. Died at his creative peak aged 27.

Janis Joplin? Exhilirating soul singer and wild woman of rock mixing grit and beauty in her classic songs. Died aged 27.

Jim Morrison? Sexy, flambouyant sensational singer with The Doors. Died aged 27.

I could make similar cases for other young creative geniuses like Buddy Holly, Sam Cooke, Otis Redding and many others. Awesome singers/songwriters who left us legacies promising much, much more greatness.

And what do you think of when you hear the name Bob Dylan?

Ageing rock star who has ceased to produce anything of any relevance for the past 35 years or so, who, if you thought couldn’t sing when at his peak, well… you should hear him now?

Ok, I know this sounds unfair – but, please, I am only talking about Bob Dylan – the brand. Bob Dylan as he will be remembered in history books in a hundred years time.

Look, Bob released many classic albums throughout the 60’s and indeed the 70’s (Planet Waves, Blood On The Tracks, Desire), before turning a stranger shade of patchy.

His live performances were hit and miss (oh, how I would have loved to have caught one of the mid 70’s U.S. only Rolling Thunder concerts). His albums became good with the odd duff track, before being duff with the good track – Slow Train from Slow Train Coming is great, Covenant Woman and Saving Grace from Saved, even Shot Of Love had the absolute classic Every Grain of Sand. And of course Infidels had Jokerman. Great tracks from patchy albums.

And there followed the nadir of the mid 80’s – nuff said. Since 1991 there have been sporadic periods of joy – Oh Mercy had its moments, Time Out of Mind too, but then we really are scratching the surface. You can pick out a few songs from the past 15 years as being good songs – but wither the world is such a better place for having them or not is open to question.

But, I hear you cry, is Bob’s body of work and influence not sufficient for one man’s mortal creative output?

Well, yes indeed, it would have been more than sufficient had we been deprived of a future after 1966. Y’see, we would never have known what the future would have held had that occurred. We could only have imagined.

But, as in the cases of Holly, Cooke, Redding et al we would have felt the pain, cruelty, and injustice of a life taken so young with so promise.

I don't wish you dead - I wish Bob Dylan a Happy Birthday


Bob Dylan would have become as immortal as the great artists mentioned above – forever trapped in his youth and promise and for whom death would not have been the end.

But that did not happen. Happily for Bob, he is today celebrating his 70th birthday – and I will raise a glass (of water, natch) to him. The history books in a hundred years time, however, will probably suffix his name with something like “protest/folk singer of the sixties” and not “arguably the most influential and significant folk/rock/poet/icon of the 20th century”.