I am getting way ahead of myself with road adventures. Since the one missing recording was out of my reach, I began collecting the music of all the supporting performers on Greg’s records. Bo Ramsey, Radoslav Lorkovic, Dave Moore, Prudence Johnson amongst others. I was also collecting cyber friends in the discussion group we call the list. One of my poems I posted there was a conglomeration of Greg’s lyrics from various songs at the time. To my amazement, it was added to Greg’s website. Here it is:
A Greg High
another seattle wrist slitting day
cloud coming down for 66 and 44 more
until greg comes here in may
can't get enough of your music Mr. Brown
love your lyrics, your music, your incredible sound
impossible to appreciate it in the background
words about real life
how bad it can be and how nice
argue about who is the bigger fan
me or my wife
kids want to go to kansas now you know
just to listen to that late night radio
about twice a year, it's clear here
gaze at the stars near the equator of Heaven
think about my grandparents, wish i was still eleven
you might wonder what goes on this fella's head
still got that loaf of bread
the bottle of wine went and the $50,000 is all spent
maybe i hung around a little too long in my hippie tent
don't turn on the tv or radio news
push in my cd and listen to you
then i can fly away if i want to
i get the good blues
just listening to "think about you"
all the money's going, going, gone
gotta listen to another song
i never would have thunk it
be online in a Greg Brown junket
this bozo's in love again
playing non-stop "Further In".
had lotsa kind of money 'til christmas came around
i just want to be in the dark with you in our little town
sitting outside smoking my cigs
i do this and that and this for my kids
dream on, little dreamers
ok, just one more good night kiss
i guess the wild geese go
with that little man in a boat
or followed john muir in his overcoat
sometimes feel my whole life is one wrong turn
i don't know who i think i'm foolin'
oh man what am i trying to say
it's kind of like "have a nice day"
i don't want to hear "happy holiday"
alright already, I admit
i'm a happy, happy, happy addict.
yes, you're right, I am sick
a hopeless Gregoholic.
like that fish in the mucked up lovely river
i am hooked.
you can read about it my new book
i'm on a greg high aren't i?
i don't know that guy
thank you and goodbye
Without medication, I still get high when I attend a Greg show. I admit I turn into a different person. At the local shows, I started dragging friends and family to them. Like an over-exuberant movie review, they were unable to capture the profoundness of the experience that I felt each time. Some would question his ability to enunciate at times, yet I have never had that problem since I knew almost every verse he sang. I stopped leading the horse to water knowing when I went to a show there would be others almost as thirsty as me.
On his next northwest tour, I rounded up the family and we travelled to Portland, Oregon. The Clinton Street Theater was as funky as its neighborhood. Yanking small children out of a motel pool when it’s 80 degrees in May is a complex task. Much dismayed, we were second in line that night. Standing in line hours before the doors opened, we conversed with the couple in front of us who were from Seattle too and we have been close friends ever since. Many of my future adventures will be with them. I believe we beat them to the front of the line the next night in Seattle. My community, created by Greg’s music, continued to grow. Even the promoter at the time in Portland got to know me. I have seen Greg perform more in Oregon than my own state. Some fans have followed Greg to Europe, my experiences are limited to the Pacific northwest. One year he came to Seattle when I was in Germany on business. Because of it, even my wife has been to one more show than me.
I have chosen to resist using fan names throughout this story to protect the ones who prefer their privacy. Some are dear friends I have yet to meet, others who now know to expect a big hug each time we reconnect. Although I would love to acknowledge them all by name, some are simply shy, humble heroes in my eyes. Since it is unclear who might like to be recognized by name and those that prefer their privacy, it is easier to omit all names. If you read this friends, you’ll know who you are.
My first road trip was a huge success and I was now infected to do more. With twenty years of recorded music in his repertoire by now, he had a different setlist every night. Depending on the venue, the crowd and his mood, he turned into a jukebox gone mad with renditions of songs that were completely altered from his recordings. This guy can ad-lib and tell stories like no other. It was time to get serious the next time he came around.