Friday In Corporate Hell (Part 1)

It’s going to be a long day of here sitting in my basement office looking at PowerPoints and Google slides and spreadsheets and…fuck, who cares?  It sucks.   Nuff said.  The upshot to all this is that I get to listen to ma records all day and, that, my friends, is definitely looking at things from the “glass is half full” perspective.  Today, that all begins with another record I brought home from Texas, the ‘Mudlark‘  album  by Leo Kottke.


“Mudlark” is a few things:

  1. Someone who scavenges in river mud for items of value, a term used especially to describe those who scavenged this way in London during the late 18th and 19th centuries.
  2. A 1950 British film by 20th Century Fox and directed by Jean Negulesco, depicting a fictional account of how Queen Victoria was eventually brought out of her mourning for her dead husband, Prince Albert.
  3. This debut album for Capitol Records released in 1971.

Kottke is also known for a few things:

  1. Being an acoustic guitarist known for a finger-picking style that draws on blues, jazz, and folk music, and for syncopated, polyphonic melodies.
  2. Overcoming a series of personal obstacles, including partial loss of hearing and a nearly career-ending bout with tendon damage in his right hand to emerge as a widely recognized master of his instrument.
  3. Focusing primarily on instrumental composition and playing, Kottke also sings sporadically, in an unconventional yet expressive baritone described by himself as sounding like “geese farts on a muggy day”.

Thank you Wikipedia.

Recording for this album started in Los Angeles and later moved to Nashville. Four of the cuts were recorded in Wayne Moss’s garage studio in Nashville. The song ‘Room 8‘  is titled after a neighborhood cat who wandered into a classroom in 1952 at Elysian Heights Elementary School in Echo Park, California and lived at the school each winter, leaving in the summer.

So there’s that.

There’s also the down-home high-speed picking of ‘Cripple Creek‘  to the steely bottleneck slide work on ‘June Bug‘  to the Baroque classicism of ‘Bourrée‘  by J.S. Bach, all of it wrapped by Kottke’s wry, surreal wit.  And, hey, how can you not  love a song called ‘Monkey Lust’?  Stylistically, it’s all over the map (as usual), blending traditional folk, bluegrass, blues, singer/songwriter, and classical into his own brand of high-octane eclecticism.  However, there’s no mistaking the Leo Kottke “sound”, hard as it might be to label it.  It is a landmark early album, which served to increase Kottke’s visibility and help establish his reputation as a homegrown American original.

Today, it’s preventing me from totally loosing my shit here this morning in Corporate Hell.


About crazytigerrabbitman

I am a fat guy and always will be in the same way they say that “once an alcoholic; always an alcoholic”. Eventually I got upset about my poor health and ballooning body frame so I decided to change things for the better. Some people sign up for Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, or whatever fad diet program it is that happens to be occupying the majority of air time on the boob tube. Other people prefer to run out and purchase the latest, fold away, piece of shit being hawked by some celebrity has-been. Me? I decided to take up triathlon. I had abused my body over the years with bacon cheeseburgers, pints of beer and double-dipped donuts, and the time had now come to abuse my body with physical exertion, perseverance and hard work instead; penitence in it's purest form. The time had come to kick my ass. I am Terry Nash and I am the “fat and the furious”.
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