Justin Stone's creekbed

songs, prayers, poetry, stories, art, photographs, moving pictures, fondnesses, tall-tales and meditations

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Location: missouri, el paso

The Anterior Insula and Hwy W

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Yesterday would have been the birthday of Gene Clark, under-appreciated singer/songwriter, fellow Missourian (born and now at rest in Tipton, Missouri, about 30 miles from where I was born and raised), and an all-time favorite voice of mine. I cannot express to you the riches of the Clark song catalog, extending from The Byrds to Dillard & Clark to a bunch of great, genre-bending solo records which through a combination of weirdness, timing, personal misfortune and tough luck never found all the ears they should have.

This singular voice and these many songs have served to quiet my soul for a long time. Happy birthday, Gene. Thank you. And my momma thanks you. My sharing of your music with her has been a great pleasure of my life, through times of hurt, times of stillness and repose, and times of great joyous reach.

For anyone interested, John Einarson's book Mr. Tambourine Man: The Life and Legacy of The Byrds' Gene Clark is a great read, not only for its sensitive exploration of Clark's life but also its valuable look at some of the American musical and pop cultural landscapes of the 1960s and 1970s in which Clark operated and was a verified trendsetter.

Most importantly, seek out the records. They are as alive now as they ever were. Honestly, I love every one of them, and each is unique in conceptualization and execution. Gene's family will appreciate your legal purchase of these necessary, vital artifacts. Also appreciative will be the more sensitive, subtle receptors of your brain and chest. I promise.