Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Line Dancers Really Suck the Fun Out of a Nightclub





Must these over-prepared, in-step, no-joy-allowed stompers ruin the night for footloose gals?
Last weekend I went out to dinner with my husband and another couple. After dinner we decided to visit a nightclub that caters to the “oldies” crowd; I’m referring to the music, not necessarily the age of the patrons. The music is great and we were looking forward to some dancing. Husbands sidled up to the bar and ordered cocktails while my girlfriend and I hit the dance floor. That’s when the trouble started.
The mood was palpable. I could hear the faint finger-snapping of West Side Story. A rumble was brewing. There we were, girlfriend and I, alone at one end of the floor staring into the glaring faces of rows and rows of angry warriors, all aligned in perfection. I felt like Mel Gibson in Braveheart. But these were not English warriors, no, these were Line Dancers. [SIGNUP]
They looked at us like we were the encroaching enemy, but there was no fear in their eyes because they had the mighty force of numbers. There were four, maybe five, rows of probably 10 dancers in each row. We were outnumbered. Undaunted, we began to dance to the music in our own interpretive way. We let our bodies react to the music in free-flowing unabashed movement. I’d liken it to George Michael’s Wham! style rather than the syncopated unison of our dance floor companions. While I felt our dance style was reflective of our creative mojo, I believe the Line Dancers saw us more as two Pig-Pens, surrounded by a cloud of chaos. Not a syncopated step in sight. In fact, about the only thing my friend and I seemed to be doing in unison was absorbing the distastefully hateful karma directed straight at our souls. Yup, there was a rumble a-brewin’.
After enough shoving and jostling and dirty, rotten, ugly, nasty facial expressions, we decided to call it quits. We were defeated. We lumbered off the dance floor having been shown the power of the many. I felt like the loser kid who has to gather up his ball and leave the playground because no one wants him there. Before we left, while finishing our cocktails, I took a close look at this social phenomenon, the Line Dancers, and made a few observations. Here’s what I’ve compiled as The Line Dancers Manual, as I see it:
1. Do not allow anyone else to share the hallowed ground that is rightfully yours. You’ve memorized all those steps so you deserve the space. And besides, all that jerky free-dance stuff is disruptive to the zen flow of Line Dancers doing their thing.
2. Dance like it’s your job. No smiling. Just putting in time until you get to go home. In fact, wear an expression of complete boredom. You’re so good at this stuff, you can do it when you’re half asleep without making a misstep.
3. Dangle your arms at your side as if you are so at ease that any greater level of confidence would require a recliner.
4. Know your craft. Learn each and every step to each and every line dance and execute with perfection while looking bored (see rule number 2.) And know which dance goes with which song. No room for error. Even the Bristol Stomp has its own line dance and, as ridiculous as this may sound, it’s not the Bristol Stomp.
5. Come prepared with your game face. If any Pig-Pens show up, be at the ready for some serious snarling and sneering, eye-rolling and head-shaking.

"Tasty Tuesday" @ Raider Country's Wine & Dine...August 22nd

"Tasty Tuesday" Tries to bring you

Related image
"Quick & Economical"
Appetizers..Dinners..Deserts..& Cocktails
to "YOUR PLACE"
(Check out our 'Thirsty Thursday' & 'Frying Friday' too)
Today's Suggestion

Salisbury Steak


Salisbury Steak Horizontal
One bite is like being back home on the ranch

Total Time:
Prep:
Level: Easy
Serves: 4

Ingredients

For patties
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 c. breadcrumbs
  • 1 tbsp. ketchup
  • 1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 Garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
For gravy
  • 2 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1/2 c. Mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp. all purpose flour
  • 1 c. beef stock
  • 1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbsp. tomato paste
  • kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Directions

  1. Make patties: In a large bowl, combine beef, egg, breadcrumbs, ketchup, worcestershire sauce and garlic. Season with salt and pepper and form into 4 oval patties.
  2. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat oil. Sear both sides of the patties, about 5 minutes per side, until a crust forms. Remove onto a plate.
  3. Wipe out skillet and add butter. Add onions and thyme to the skillet and stir until onion becomes translucent. Add mushrooms and cook until browned and tender, about 4 minutes. Sprinkle onions and mushrooms with flour, and stir until they are fully coated. Cook another 2 minutes, then add Worcestershire sauce, tomato paste, and beef stock. Stir to combine and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Bring the gravy to a simmer and return the patties to the skillet. Cover and cook for 10-15 more minutes, until the patties are done and the sauce has thickened. Plate the patties and top with more gravy. Serve.
 

Today in Country Music History...August 22, 2017






2011
Broken Bow releases Jason Aldean's "Tattoos On This Town" to radio

2009
Taylor Swift's "You Belong With Me" kicks off a two-week run at #1 on the Billboard country singles chart

2002
George Strait's "She'll Leave You With A Smile" video, featuring footage from his March 3 performance at the Houston Livestock & Rodeo Show, premieres on CMT's "Most Wanted Live"

1994
The Mavericks grab their first gold album, for "What A Crying Shame"

1987
Restless Heart appears at #1 on the Billboard country singles chart with "Why Does It Have To Be (Wrong Or Right)"

1983
Crystal Gayle and husband/manager Bill Gatzimos have their first baby, Katherine Claire Gatzimos, at a hospital in Nashville

1979
Kenny Rogers, Willie Nelson and Charlie Daniels each secure four nominations as finalists for the Country Music Association awards are announced in Nashville

1968
George Jones and Tammy Wynette announce their marriage, although it doesn't actually take place for another six months

1960
Floyd Collin Wraye is born in DeQueen, Arkansas. Under the stage name Collin Raye, he uses a powerhouse voice to make commercially successful social statements through such hits as "Little Rock," "In This Life" and "I Think About You"

1957
Holly Dunn is born in San Antonio, Texas. The 1987 winner of the Country Music Association's Horizon Award, the singer/songwriter emerges on MTM Records for a short run as a hitmaker, earning membership in the Grand Ole Opry in 1989

Today's Quicky...A: Bedbug.


Q: What would Republicans use to eavesdrop on a hooker?

Monday, August 21, 2017

Country in the NEWS:..August 21, 2017 (Country Stars & the Solar Eclipse)

How the Stars Saw the Moon and Sun 

 

Nashville’s Celestial Event Brightens Everyone's Monday
The last total solar eclipse in Nashville happened way back in July 29, 1478. So when it happened again Monday (Aug. 21), thousands of people all over the city were able to get a glimpse of the much-anticipated solar eclipse at 1:27 p.m.
Approximately 8,000 went to First Tennessee Park to watch the eclipse reach totality when the moon moved between the sun and earth for nearly two minutes. And other spectators watched it from all around the city.
Even the stars took part in the hype.
Dierks Bentley fashioned his own eclipse-watching gear piling sunglasses on top of each other. Luke Bryan and his wife Caroline prepared with the official glasses. Little Big Town did the same. Bryan’s mom went for even more full coverage, and a smoke. And Kelsea Ballerini put on six pairs of unofficial sunglasses to get herself eclipse ready. Jake Owen was just psyched to watch the sun high five the moon.
Kacey Musgraves said it was insane. Brett Eldredge enjoyed it from the water. Brantley Gilbert called it a spectacle. Darius Rucker and friends watched with official glasses on.
Hopefully none of the country artists or other people looking up in Nashville actually just wore a pair of sunglasses or six, because looking directly at an uneclipsed sun can cause serious damage. 

Country in the NEWS:..August 21, 2017 (Charlottesville)

Why Country Music Stars Are Reluctant to Speak Up About Charlottesville

 

In the wake of the deadly neo-Nazi march in Virginia, the Nashville community has stayed largely silent

On August 12th, a group of white nationalists carrying torches marched in the streets of Charlottesville, Virginia, chanting, "Jews will not replace us" and "white lives matter." They did not feel the need to obscure their faces.
One of these men drove his car into a crowd of counter-protesters, killing an activist named Heather Heyer and injuring many more. President Trump, in a nationally televised press conference, insisted that the neo-Nazis and white supremacist groups included some "very fine people." Vigils and counter-protests cropped up across the country, and the story has dominated conversations in real life and online.
And yet, if you scrolled through the social media accounts of some of the biggest names in country music, you'd have no idea that it wasn't just another week in Nashville. Outside of a handful of outspoken young performers, many country stars were sharing pictures from their weekend tour stops or promoting their appearances in the CMA Music Fest ABC television special.
We are, by all measures and accounts, at a pivotal moment in the complex and bloody history of race relations and white supremacy in America – a boiling point that will leave our country scalded if not handled with courage and care. There are not, as the president insisted, "many sides" to the events that occurred in Charlottesville. There are Nazis, and there is everyone else.
So why is it so hard for artists in country music – a genre with a rich history of giving a voice to the downtrodden – to share a few words of sympathy and solidarity; to offer, at the very least, an acknowledgement of the violent, uncertain, increasingly turbulent state of the nation? A simple "Hey y'all, white supremacy is bad" – far less than 140 characters – would suffice.
But country stars still seemingly live in fear of getting "Dixie Chicked." It has been over a decade since Chicks singer Natalie Maines' onstage comment about being "ashamed" by George W. Bush got the band blacklisted from country radio, but the specter of bonfires fueled by disowned copies of Wide Open Spaces remains a a constant reminder of what's at stake if you step out of line. Or speak up.
Last year, the Dixie Chicks embarked on a sold-out world tour, but the abrupt end to their radio days still clearly informs who speaks out about politics in the country landscape, and how. It's not a coincidence that many of the country artists who have been vocal about Charlottesville are building careers that aren't completely centered around country radio airplay. Will Hoge wrote a powerful statement on Facebook challenging his fans to "jump off the Trump train" and "walk boldly and proudly onto the right side of history." Brothers Osborne tweeted that "wearing Nazi regalia is the most un-American thing you could do." Kacey Musgraves shared a video of the deadly attack and clapped back at fans who claimed her attitude made her sound like (gasp!) a pop star. Even foulmouthed country character Wheeler Walker Jr. has been tweeting up an anti-Nazi storm.
With his single "More Girls Like You" heading toward the country Top 10 and a new album due September 8th, Kip Moore didn't shy away from confronting racism directly, posting the following message on Twitter the day after the Charlottesville protests turned deadly: "If your parents taught u 2 hate people of color they're idiots. If you're an adult & still spewing their hate, that makes u a bigger idiot."
He followed it up with a much longer post on Instagram, describing growing up in southern Georgia, and being "100% aware of what racism looks like, sounds like, and what it feels like (when you hear it out of another's mouth)." He urged his followers "to stand up to your friends when you hear them or see them doing racist shit. It starts with each one of us individually if we wanna change what this world looks like."
All of the country artists who have spoken out against racism deserve credit, but the list of performers who haven't is telling. Brad Paisley, who took a bold if poorly executed step toward addressing white privilege with 2013's "Accidental Racist," and Carrie Underwood, who has publicly expressed support for such controversial social issues as gay marriage, have thus far remained silent. As have Luke Bryan, Keith Urban, Chris Stapleton, Miranda Lambert, Kenny Chesney, Dierks Bentley and Sam Hunt. While these A-listers ostensibly have more to lose by taking a stand, they also have the most influence to effect change and be powerful examples for their fans.

In April, Tim McGraw and Faith Hill's Soul2Soul Tour stopped in Portland, Oregon, just a few hours after a known white supremacist spouting anti-Muslim hate speech threatened two women of color on a light rail train and then slit the throats of three men who stepped up to help, killing two of them. News of the attack had just begun to spread, and the city was in shock. Toward the end of the show, McGraw gave an emotional performance of his imploring "Humble and Kind," supported by images from the song's diverse, multicultural music video. The crowd sang along to every single word, not skipping a beat when the smiling faces of a Muslim woman wearing a hijab and a Sikh man in a turban appeared on screen.
It wasn't a bold political statement, but at that moment, in front of that crowd, it felt like one.
McGraw and Hill have been quick and vocal about condemning the neo-Nazi actions in Charlottesville. McGraw dedicated multiple Instagram posts blasting "the violent white supremacist attack on freedom and respect." After President Trump's unhinged Trump Tower press conference, he shared a quote from Abraham Lincoln, the implications of which were clear: "Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power."
Without even mentioning Trump's name, McGraw's posts stirred up a hornet's nest in the comments section. While plenty of fans voiced support and gratitude for McGraw's message, others were quick to assert that Heather Heyer's death was "entirely her own fault," that McGraw was disrespecting his own race, that Black Lives Matter is the real racist group and, of course, that he should "shut up and sing."
It's easy to say that country singers don't bear any political responsibility, that their job is only to entertain us with fun songs that take our minds off current events. But there are very serious consequences to the genre's post-Dixie Chicks policy of isolationism. When the issue is as cut and dry as racism and bigotry, artists shouldn't refrain from getting "political" for fear of losing some close-minded fans – fans they'd be better off without.
Politics, privilege and race relations are complicated issues, but denouncing racism, white supremacy and fascism is very easy. This is not about conservatives vs. liberals, or North vs. South. This is about taking a stand for what's right at a critical moment. Now more than ever, silence equals complicity.
Woody Guthrie's guitar famously bore the words, "This machine kills fascists."
In 2017, the country music machine shouldn't coddle them.

Country in the NEWS:..August 21, 2017 (Steve Earle)

 

Steve Earle Talks Outlaws, Guy Clark and 'Fascist' Trump

Outspoken singer-songwriter's new album 'So You Wanna Be an Outlaw' salutes music's hardcore troubadours



Following the release of 2015's blues-drenched Terraplane, Steve Earle has returned to deliver the rambling, heavily traditional country of So You Wannabe an Outlaw, a whip-smart homage to the hardcore troubadours that influenced his sometimes reckless youth and shaped the music – and the image – that first brought him to prominence in Nashville more than three decades ago. 

Featuring special guests Willie Nelson, Miranda Lambert (on the sprightly but heartbreaking gem "This Is How It Ends") and "Whiskey River" writer Johnny Bush, So You Wanna Be an Outlaw, released earlier this summer, is an intensely raw and often delightfully clamorous nod to the fellow outliers the young Texan gravitated toward when he arrived in Nashville in 1974. Recorded in six days at Austin's Arlyn Studios, the Telecaster-fueled collection could even be considered a perfect parallel to the outspoken Earle himself. Garrulous, yet nearly always thought-provoking, Earle sat down with Rolling Stone Country at Nashville's House of Blues studios recently, riffing on all things outlaw, including restoring the integrity and true meaning of that term as it relates to himself and his fellow artists. The 62-year-old performer, actor, author and activist also offers his assessment of the unpredictable Trump presidency, noting, "We've never had an orangutan in the White House before."
You've said So You Wanna Be an Outlaw is an unapologetic nod to Waylon Jennings' 1973 LP Honky Tonk Heroes. How so?  Waylon played with electric guitar and there weren't that many country acts that did at that time. Johnny Cash is sort of the center of everything for me as far as country acts go because he was the connection between all the pop and rock music I was listening to and the country music I was listening to. On The Johnny Cash Show, I saw Derek and the Dominoes, Neil Young and Bob Dylan and Merle Haggard and the Carter Family, for fuck's sake. So I learned a lot about what I know about country music that I didn't already know in that point, from back-tracking from things I saw on The Johnny Cash Show. Waylon, though, I think I saw for the first time on The Faron Young Show. There were all these syndicated country TV shows. Buck Owens was pretty cool, Faron Young had a show, the Wilburn Brothers had a show that was pretty good. I watched all those shows and they had guys with guitars on them. I wanted to hate Merle Haggard just because of "Okie From Muskogee" but I couldn't. I knew how good he was. When I saw Waylon there was something different with this guy.
What do you remember about the first time you saw Waylon?I saw Waylon become Waylon with the slicked back hair, and I think I saw the first ever appearance that he made with the grease out of his hair at a thing called the Abbott Homecoming, in between the first Fourth of July picnic and the second. It was a pretty horrible failure. But it was Waylon, Sammi Smith, Willie, Jerry Jeff Walker. The first time I saw Jerry Jeff with the Gonzo Band was that show. Who else? Kinky Friedman. I almost hurt myself laughing. I found out later that that was the night that Sammi Smith oil-spotted [left] Jody Payne. He was in Willie Nelson's band for 35 years after that because they were married and she got pissed off at him and left him there. He ended up on Willie's bus and in Willie's band.
Willie sings with you on the title cut, which has an awful lot of words in it. Did he have any trouble with all those lyrics?He's older and he's got some lung issues. I've got lung issues, too, so I understood it. It actually had more syllables in it the way that I wrote it than what he sang, but not that much. He stuck with it, as a writer he was respecting it. There was one point where I said, "You know, you can just do that the way you want to." He said, "No, this is a good song and that's the way that you wrote it, that's the way were going to do it." We did his vocal in Maui. I've taken to going to Maui at Christmas. This will be the third year coming up. [His son] John Henry and I are going to go Christmas Day again. [Spiritual teacher] Ram Dass and Willie Nelson live about 14 miles apart and Kris Kristofferson has a place over in Hana. They're usually there at Christmas time. Somebody said to me one time, "Oh, man, why don't you go to the big island, Maui is so Seventies." Ram Dass, Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson – I think I'm OK with that. Every dog has a bandana around its neck and a Frisbee in its mouth. That's my kind of island.
How intentional is it that the title of that song and the album includes the term "wannabe," making it all one word instead of two?I'm fascinated with language, so I'm fascinated with made-up words. "Wannabe" has become a word, a noun, which means somebody that's a poseur. It's also a hip-hop thing to take the contractions of words. But there is a little bit of a joke involved in it, too. 
In country music now, the best stuff in this town is all being done by women, when it comes to stuff I really genuinely consider to be art. Even in that moment before she suddenly wasn't a country artist anymore, which was a natural progression for her, it was Taylor Swift when I finally started figuring out that I needed to listen to the girls. I don't listen to a lot of radio, I've been out of touch for a long time, but I was at the Grammys and I saw Taylor do "Mean," and it occurred to me, "Oh, she's really a singer-songwriter." Especially when I realized she had written it by herself. It's the idea of something that happened to her, but it's something that her audience, which is largely young girls, have had happen to them. Almost anybody adolescent can relate to getting dissed. It either happens to you or you think it's happening to you when you're going through that part of your life. I know I did. This job is empathy. Nobody cares that I've gotten a divorce or that I miss my kid or that I'm any of the other things that might happen to me. What they care about is that it has happened to them.

What's your definition of an outlaw, as it pertains to country music?Part of the reason for doing this album was to rehabilitate the term "outlaw." Look, George Jones was not going to the liquor store at 3:30 in the morning on a lawnmower, because there weren't any liquor stores open. The first person I ever heard about freebasing cocaine in Nashville was George Jones. The deal was, drugs and alcohol had nothing to do with the idea of outlaw. There were people that were doing what they were told to do musically who had drug and alcohol problems. Waylon happened to develop a legal issue because of it because it got kind of out of hand. I was there [when Jennings was busted for cocaine possession in August 1977]. I was at American Studios that night. I left about an hour-and-a-half before the police came through the door. I was with Guy and Susanna [Clark]. 
Doug Sahm is the person that I think is responsible for everything. Doug moved back to San Antonio from the West Coast just before Willie moved back to Texas. He lived in my neighborhood. His daughter, well, I had dropped out but she went to the high school that I would have been going to if I hadn't dropped out the year before. I knew her and that's how I met Doug. I followed her home several times hoping to get a glimpse of Doug and I met him in their driveway. That's our local rock & roll hero where I grew up. But he decides he's too weird to live in San Antonio anymore very quickly and he moves to Austin. Jerry Wexler signed him to Atlantic and he made that Doug Sahm and Band record [released in January 1973]. Meanwhile, Wexler expresses an interest in other stuff that's going on in Texas.
Including Willie Nelson…Doug Sahm was completely responsible for that. Wexler signed Willie and they made Shotgun Willie and Phases and Stages. It didn't sell so he got dropped after two records and they regretted it almost immediately because his next record was Red Headed Stranger. Those records didn't sell, except for in Texas. The two years before I moved to Nashville, everybody I knew had Phases and Stages and Shotgun Willie. All the local bands played those songs. I played them. Waylon made Honky Tonk Heroes in '72 when Shotgun Willie was made and very much influenced by it. But Willie had left RCA and Waylon hadn't left RCA yet and they didn't want to release it. He had to really fight to get it put out.
Johnny Bush, who sings on the album with you on "Walkin' in L.A.," is a Texas music legend, but other than his writing "Whiskey River," many people outside the state don't know much about his incredible life story, or that he was in Ray Price's band with Willie.
He was also in Willie's very first band, the Record Men. I've known him since I was about 19 years old. When I was writing this record I wanted a Ray Price shuffle. Bush kind of perfected that. Price went to all that orchestrated stuff and Bush was probably one of the guys who was going to fill that gap, but he lost his voice just when he was getting ready to be a big deal. He wasn't playing for a long time. He finally discovered why he had lost his voice. It was a genetic condition, and it turns out there's a treatment for it. He started receiving treatment and he's singing great. One of my oldest friends, Weyman McBride, a guy I grew up with who was a year older than me, his dad had one of the big local country bands. He went from playing country to playing rock & roll. He was in my uncle's rock band for a while. He's in Johnny Bush's band nowadays.

Your first meeting with Bush could have ended up being your last, however... My copy of Johnny's autobiography is inscribed: "To Steve, I sure am glad I didn't pull the trigger." The reason is, right before I moved to Nashville, I moved back to San Antonio from Houston. I married a girl from Houston and went back to San Antonio, basically to get her away from her parents. I was playing sit-down gigs at this restaurant called the Roth Baron. I did a couple of happy hours solo and I did two evening gigs after the major dining hours were over. There was a guy named Joe Voorhees who was in Bush's band. Bush was like Van Morrison, everybody worked for him at least twice because he fired people all the time. After a while he'd forget that you worked for him and he'd hire you back. Voorhees played piano in Bush's band, but he was a pretty good five-string banjo player. He used to come sit in with me. 
 "It was the first time anyone pointed a gun at me that close."
One night, we got really stoned and didn't need to be driving. Probably drank a little bit, too, but we smoked a bunch of really strong pot. I lived in Cibilo, which was 45 minutes away but we needed to come down a little bit. We were hungry. Voorhees goes, "Hey, Bush is in Vegas and I've got the keys to his condo." We went over there and raided Johnny Bush's icebox. I'm sitting there, just eating the way you eat when you smoked a bunch of pot, a big bowl of Rice Krispies with some bananas in it. All of a sudden, I look up at Joe and all the color had drained from his face, like a fucking cartoon or something. He goes, "John!" I turn around and there's Johnny Bush in a bathrobe with a .357 magnum pointed right at the back of my head 12 inches away.
Was that the first time you ever had a gun pointed at you?I might've been among a group of people who had a gun pointed in their general direction one or two times before that. But it wasn't the last. It was the first time anyone pointed one at me that close, that's for sure. [Laughs
Back to the record, 'You Broke My Heart' has a real Hank Williams quality to it.He wrote like that, yeah. It's probably the Oxfordian in me … I believe Edward de Vere wrote those [Shakespeare] plays like I think Fred Rose had a lot to do with [the language of Hank Williams' songs]. He was the guy with the training. The images came from Hank, but I think a lot of the elegance came from his co-writing. I like to write archaic country songs like that. It's mainly about language. I went through a thing where I was learning to write in iambic pentameter. I wrote a spoken-word piece called "Warrior," that was on The Revolution Starts Now. It was war, as a character, conspiring against us. I based it on the Henry V prologue, "Oh, for a muse of fire…" An actor friend of mine read that and we cut that. I went in and matched the track iamb-for-iamb because I'd never done it before. Then I went back in and cut my vocal. I've kind of learned to do that since and have become fascinated with that kind of stuff. Allen Ginsberg said, "It's meaningless to break meter until you learn to rhyme meter in the first place." I realized that some country music, older country music from the Thirties, Forties and Fifties, is written in almost formal language, all these long sentences. If you look at "You Broke My Heart," it's written like that. There's some really long, really elegant sentences that you don't see much in country music.
The record closes with the beautiful "Goodbye Michelangelo." What is that one about?Guy Clark. When Guy died we had a wake here at [photographer] Jim McGuire's studio. There were probably 60 people there. That night, Rodney Crowell, Shawn Camp, Tamara Saviano [Clark's longtime friend and biographer], Jim McGuire and I took Guy's ashes to Santa Fe to [musician and sculptor] Terry Allen. Don't ever mouth off to Terry Allen about how you want to be disposed of, because at some point Guy said – and I wasn't there, I didn't witness this but enough people did that I trust – he said that he wanted to be cremated and his ashes interred in one of Terry's bronzes. He's still sitting on Terry's mantel because Terry hasn't made the bronze yet. But we took Guy's ashes out, Emmylou [Harris] flew in, [Joe] Ely, Lyle Lovett, Robert Earl Keen flew in, and we had another wake there. I got home a couple days later and I wrote "Goodbye Michelangelo."

You keep close tabs on all the political news, so where do you think we're headed with this president?I don't see him finishing the term. I don't see how he does it. Although it's hard to predict what this guy's gonna do. We've never had an orangutan in the White House before. There's a lot of "What does this button do?" going on. It's scary. He really is a fascist. Whether he intended to be or not, he's a real live fascist. That's what's going on. What's happening – and this is what lefties have to keep in mind – [Republicans] are OK with him being there. While we're paying attention to all the stupid shit he's doing, they're methodically seeing to their agenda and they're getting a lot of shit done under the radar. They're hoping for one more Supreme Court justice and Roe v. Wade is done. They don't really care about Roe v. Wade, they care about getting elected. There are people in the House that care about it, but almost no senators. Whatever Abraham Lincoln thought it was in the past, the Republican Party is about the wealthiest people paying as few taxes as possible and letting go of as little of their wealth as possible and making an environment for them to be able to make more. We've gotten to the point where we're almost unapologetic about it.
How do you think the country got to where we find ourselves today?If you want to know what's wrong with the United States of America, it goes way deeper than Donald Trump. We asked for that. There's a core problem and the best way to define it is: George W. Bush got into Yale. The very fact that that's possible means something's wrong with the way that we do things; the way we value talent and undervalue education. Right now, you can go "they" and point fingers all you want to, but I hope it becomes obvious to people that reality television has a cost. You have to think that Fox News and reality television is real for Donald Trump to be possible. Neither thing is true. 
Yet, try to convince his hardcore supporters of that…Right, but the point of the matter is we have to convince them. We have to remember that we can't keep getting lefties that say we're down with the working people when we're not, really. We don't really understand and we don't really understand what they're going through. And we're not really willing to pay any more taxes ourselves.
If he's not going to make it to the end of his term, how important do you think it is for him to be out of office by the midterm elections?I don't know, man. I think the agenda, are far as the Republicans are concerned, is going to be the same whether it's him or, uh, Race Bannon [Vice President Mike Pence's strong resemblance to that animated character on the Sixties TV series Jonny Quest has become a widely circulated Internet meme]. I think it's going to be the same one way or the other, with either one of those guys in office. Trump's scary because he has the button. My guess is that there's been something built around him to get between him and the button. There was when Nixon was in office. They gave him fake codes. He was starting to lose it and walk around talking to pictures and drinking. That's all he did the last two years he was in office. He walked around, talked to the portraits and had a glass of fucking whiskey in his hand all the time.