Monday, February 12, 2007

Classic Pick: - John Prine - Fair & Square (2005)

"I felt about as welcome
as a Wal-Mart Superstore."
~ John Prine ~

While I was rifling through some CDs at my friendly neighborhood "spin & grin"...I came across an old friend.

There was John Prine walking down a long stretch of road, guitar in hand, on the cover of his latest offering, “Fair & Square.” (2005)

Although Prine has a strong cult following, and is acclaimed by critics, songwriters and fans alike, you would not know it by relying on your local radio stations in Wichita.

That's unfortunate because Prine is one of those rare magical artists who can tap into all of our everyday emotions without making us feel guilty of our shortcomings.

With 14 tracks, “Fair & Square” is loaded with wonderful Prine observations.

 “Old Faithful’s just a fountain compared to the glory of true love...Prine reminds us on the outstanding opening track “Glory of True Love,” ...and he slyly laments...I’d like to drive a Cadillac the color of her long black the rocking “She Is My Everything.”

We also find Prine spinning a yarn about a beaten down husband and his nagging wife, and the clever way in which he escapes.  “My body’s in the room with you just catching hell / But my soul is drinking beer down the road a spell.”  - “The Other Side of Town”.

And JP takes a spot-on social bite at the mean, spiteful people we've all encountered....Jealousy and stupidity don’t equal harmony” - “Some Humans Ain’t Human.”

Lost Gem:-->  “Taking a Walk” a gentle weary acclamation on how problems piling up on our shoulders...sometimes simply leave us only one recourse.

JP also nails one of his best "Prine-isms" ever...this time amusingly throwing Wal-Mart under the bus.  Gold!

Have you heard this gem!

A man came to our house
I believe it was yesterday
I would have invited him in
But I didn't have a lot to say

His anticipation of me opening the door
Outweighed my apprehension 

as it never had before
And drove my concentration
Right through that hardwood floor

I'm taking a walk
I'm going outside
I'm taking a walk
I'm just getting by

There's a girl in the white house
I don't even know her name
Her disheveled appearance
Speaks volumes of shame

It's an embarrassing situation
But a situation just the same
The way she walks on others
And never takes the blame
Upsets my constitution
Beyond its mortal frame

Oo-oo a-ha

I'm taking a walk
I'm going outside
I'm watching the birds
I'm just getting by

Found a card in the pocket
Of my worn out overalls
From a girl in Cedar Rapids
Now residing in Idaho Falls

I wish you could have been there
When she opened up the door
And looked me in the face
Like she never did before
I felt about as welcome
As a Wal-Mart Superstore

0o-oo - a-ha

I'm taking a walk
I'm going outside
I'm taking a walk
I don't need a ride

I'm watching the birds
Flying so high

Good stuff!

Casey Chambers


Anonymous said...

Hi Casey, thanks for leaving a comment at Timedoor. I'll put up a link to your blog. Keep on bloggin' in the free world!


mjrc said...

so you're a lyrics person, too, huh? all right! well, it definitely looks like you're off to a good start here. keep up the good work! : )