Friday, February 02, 2007

“First we drank some whiskey, then we drank some gin, then we had tequila and that’s what did me in”

Way back ten or eleven years ago, I used to listen to If I Should Fall From Grace With God and Rum, Sodomy and the Lash about as obsessively as I have ever listened to anything in my life, certainly more obsessively than I have listen to most of my bosses, and without question more closely than I listened to my boss from Mail Boxes Etc. The Pogues represented something I wished I could be, Irish. More to the point: drunk. While close to a quarter of my blood runs green, my name, hair and upbringing are all things Italian-American. Nevertheless, I sang along with “I’m a Man You Don’t Meet Everyday” and “Bottle of Smoke” as if I were raised in County Cork.

While I don’t regularly put the Pogues on the CD player way I used to, I was excited to hear that they are coming to Chicago, full line up including the incomparable, rat-faced Shane McGowan. Though he didn’t write my favorite Pogues song, “Thousands are Sailing” he may be the best lyricists since Ray Davies, and you know how I love Ray Davies. So I’m glad to have him back in the band and working again and, hopefully, off the fuckin’ skag.

So I am going to try and nab a ticket. The trouble is no one wants to go with. Mi nina bella is not interested in watching an emaciated, toothless Irishman slur lyrics about the broad majestic Shannon. Xtop gave a tentative “yeah” but I wonder if he’s willing to make the trek from KC. Ditto DC who I invited, but hell it’s a long ride from Taipei to Chicago and I don’t know if Shane and co. are enough to get the boy back in town. Of course, this may be the last chance to see the boys before Shane drinks himself to death. Then again, the British press has been giving the guy 5 years to live for the past 20.

Alas, I may have to raise a solitary glass at the Congress Theater and hope they play “Night Train to Lorca” all on me lonesome.