Mickey’s demands for the day:
- Dead shirt.
- All the cocaine in the world.
Mickey’s demands for the day:
Perhaps as usual I’ve stumbled onto a theme for the evening: the rank unprofessionalism of the past. All of this–every single part of it–is unacceptable in today’s shiny and buffed branding exercise of a culture: the duct tape all over the piano, the circus tent, the plywood the plywood the plywood holy shit the plywood. No one even thought to order some tie-dyed curtains from Nighthawk to drape over the backdrop which, as I have mentioned, is just naked plywood.
So much unused space to announce corporate partnerships.
What are you doing?
“Checking the stage to make sure it won’t collapse.”
You think maybe you should’ve done that before the band got on it?
“Things get gotten to when I get to them.”
“You all right?”
Took me a second to parse that sentence.
“You knew what I meant.”
I truly didn’t.
Penduluminescent super troopers wrestle feedback gremlins in the balcony, while the ushers and the kids have ongoing discussions about the propriety of sitting on stairs, and the road crew barters for blowjobs backstage. The bathrooms need to be cleaned, cleansed, purified, all. In the concourse run round the loge, there is dynamism and torque, spooky action at such a far distance from the stage, where the next chord is a B minor.
Hey, Mrs. Donna Jean. Whatcha doing?
“Feelin’ it, sugar.”
I see that. You look like Kate Moss.
“All pretty people look alike.”
Your hair length says to me that you’ve suffered no extended illnesses.
“Okay, that’s enough. Don’t talk to me like you talk to those Burnin’ Man skanks, darlin’. I ain’t gonna contemplate the universe with you.”
“Besides, I’m married.”
Oh, Mrs. Donna Jean. I don’t want to do this bit with you.
“IS THIS GUY BOTHER–”
Did Keith just slide off the horse?
Where’d he get a horse?
Good talk, Mrs. Donna Jean.
Sometimes we go left to right, sometimes we don’t. This is one of those “don’t” times.
Hey, Godchauxes. Whatcha doing?
“Waitin’ for my turn to sing, bein’ proud, wearin’ skirts. The usual, sugar.”
Who you two voting for?
Did Keith slide bonelessly to the ground?
Well, who are you voting for, Mrs. Donna Jean?
“Same person I always vote for: Jesus.”
I don’t think He wants the job.
“He didn’t wanna be the Messiah neither, but He did that pretty good. Jesus ’16!”
Not the worst candidate you could vote for.
“No, that’s Gary Johnson, honey.”
It’s a guy standing in an alley; others are present. The subject is uncompelling.
But observe the composition: the strict adherence to the rule of thirds, the lightening color bands ascending up the frame, the Kubrickian one-point perspective.
Furthermore, observe your own observation: where does your eye start? On the brightest object, the light top left, and the glasses of the serial killer dude, and then across Keith’s baggy orbs, and finally to Macho Scungilli enjoying the shit out of a smoke and a mustache. (It’s not a perfect Fibonacci spiral–there should be a shiny necklace around Keith’s neck–but it’s close enough for rock and roll.)
It’s a guy standing in an alley; others are present. The photograph is art.
Raise a glass to the photographers. To Bob Minkin, and Herb Greene, and Baron Wolman, and Jay Bakesberg, and Jim Anderson, and Erica McDonald, and Ed Perlstein, and Robbi Cohn, and Susana Millman. Raise a glass to Rosie McGee.
Your guess is as good as mine.
This is Keith Richard Godchaux; it is his birthday today, and he doesn’t show up around here very much. Just a sleepy punchline most of the time, I’m sorry to say, but there’s nothing to hang a character on: he did no interviews and his physical presence on shows caught on camera gives little of his personality away. (When he made it into the film, that is: he’s almost completely absent from Sunshine Daydream and the Beat Club footage, but he does get some nice shots in The Grateful Dead Movie.) I don’t know if I’ve ever heard his speaking voice. He died in 1980, which is the past but not that past, and nothing remains.
Did they call you Keith, Keith? Godchaux? Cho-Cho? Frenchy? What was your favorite candy? Did you go to church? What was your best subject in school? Did you write Mrs. Donna Jean letters? What did you think about lacrosse?
The rest of them are easy studies, Keith; who the hell were you?
Also: a studio apartment the size of Keith’s forehead rents for five grand a month in San Francisco nowadays.