Friday, July 21, 2006

Heart of Gold

Just finished watching the Neil Young film at my house. Just excellent. Overly sentimental, but never to the point of affectation. Simplistic, but simplistic becauses it utterly rejects the very idea of cleverness. It's very reminiscint of Johnny Cash's American recordings: a look back on life by a man who knows he's close enough to death that he can say exactly what he wants to, without edits, second thoughts or thinking, "this line is too obvious."

I think this is why I love Neil Young. I'm half-Nebraskan, really, not only because I live in the state's attempt at a metropolis, but because I've always stood at the periphery of ruralness and yearned to be urbane. I can bullshit with farmers, but I don't know them. When I was 14 or 15 I told my dad I didn't want to go fishing with him anymore; I was too cool, as 15-year-olds often are. When I sit with my extended family at the farmhouse I know that I belong, but the back of my brain cries, "impostor!." I'm intruiged by picking fruit out of a ditch and using it in pie the same way I am about becoming a Packer fan, but I've never bothered to do it.

All my down-home genes are recessive.

So besides blood, music is my prime connection to the Good Life. It makes me feel a bit like I suppose half-Jews feel: clearly outclassed in an Orthodox synagogue, but the possesor of an interesting character tease among the lay people. I'll never grow up on a farm, but I always will be able to drive through the plains listening to Neil and feel some kind of ownership.

3 comments:

Chris Jones said...

You've just described the platonic Idea of an alt-country fan. Go ye therefore and buy some Uncle Tupelo cds.

Except I sense that you're better than most at ditching the protective irony our kitsch comes wrapped up in.

melanie said...

Andrew - I'm linking your blog on mine. You better be OK with that.

A.G. Moseman said...

Andrew feel fine.