Friday, July 10, 2015

Morrissey and tunes for the road

I went to see Morrissey last night in Chicago.

Nice of him to play the Civic Opera House, conveniently located between the two major train stations for both myself and my friend, Dixie, who graciously provided the ticket. I have long been a fan of Morrissey, both of his solo work but mostly of his songs with The Smiths, but this was my first opportunity to see him live. And with Mozz's history of canceled or abbreviated shows, it's something of a rare occurrence. Here's what I learned at the show:

-He and his band are solid. Clear sound, tight performance, and the incorporation of instruments you don't normally hear in rock, such as oboe and mandolin.

-Morrissey doesn't say much. Dixie informs me this was something of a departure for him as we went an entire performance without a rant.

-He's big in Mexico. Dixie told me that and the composition of the crowd seems to bear out that assertion. He even has a following among a few gang members, as illustrated in his song, "Hector was the First of the Gang to Die."

-Along those lines, I got to see a few fights break out. They were mostly between women and over the fact that two ladies wanted to stand and dance while all those around them would rather sit and watch Morrissey. To which I say to the detractors, "It's a concert. Lighten up."

-Morrissey played four Smiths songs. A very pleasant surprise as that's four more than I had expected.

On the train ride home, my thoughts meandered back to Dulce and my impending trip. More specifically, I dwelled on what a logistical tangle it has become. Interviewees declining or worse, interviewees not responding at all to my requests. I mean, I'd settle for a "get lost" from them at this point. Then there is the typical work of plotting navigation from airport to car rental to hotel to meeting places to Dulce and then back again. I could really use a secretary but god knows what they would cost. On the sunnier side, I thought about music.

Once upon a time, I would make a mix CD for such a road trip. Of course today I still can, uploading music from my collection to my iPod or phone. Problem is my phone holds a charge as well as a screen door keeps the air in on a submarine. Doesn't matter. I'm still going to upload a playlist for my little capriole of faith. Here are the songs so far:

The Smiths, "Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want"

Morrissey, "Suedehead" (If he can visit Freemont, Indiana for the video and be accepted, I have a shot at Dulce.)

Duran Duran, "Is There Anyone Out There?"

U2, "In God's Country"

David Bowie, "Loving the Alien"

Portishead, "Mysterons"

REM, "Answers From the Great Beyond"

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