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Sunday, 31 December 2017

Waiting for Jefferson

Washingon awaits Jefferson's arrival, 1936 | by MichaelRyerson

Washington awaits Jefferson's arrival, 1936: photo by Michael Ryerson, 29 December 2017

Bringing forth the idea from the stone
Took its toll, all those years of work
Nervous strain, headaches, stomach trouble
Yet did I ever once complain
Not I, Gutzon Borglum 
But the dynamite... the drilling...
Every day 
And then I couldn't go on
Yet somehow did go on because I was driven
One day I took a fall on the scaffolding
My back went out
But a few days later there I was again back up there
It was people like me
Who built Aswan
And now I don't even know their names anymore
Than you would know mine
Were I not the #1 monumental sculptor
In the greatest country in the history of the earth
I grew more and more cantankerous
After a while I knew I was never going to finish the project
But I was obstinate
My first attempt with the face of Jefferson 
Blown up after two years
Did I despair
I dynamited large areas of rock from under Washington's Brow
And no one knew
The headaches got worse
My views regarding the superiority of the Nordic race 
Fell on deaf ears
With everybody but the Grand Dragon
And on rolled the years

Eucalyptus stand | by ADMurr

Wilmington | by ADMurr

Wilmington [LA]: photo by Andrew Murr, 23 December 2017

Snowy day looking north on La Brea from De Longpre, 1921 | by MichaelRyerson

 Snowy day looking north on La Brea from De Longpre, 1921 | Looking north on La Brea, De Longpre crossing in the foreground and Sunset Boulevard in the middle distance. Chaplin Studios on the right. 1921: photo by Michael Ryerson, 28 December 2017

. | by ADMurr

Footprint, 1945 | by MichaelRyerson

Golden Hour at the Lounge | by ADMurr


TC said...

Dylan: Knockin' on Heaven's Door (live Birmingham UK 24 June 1998) w Van Morrison Larry Campbell guitar Tony Garnier bass

Dylan: Highway 61 (live c. 1997) w Susan Tedeschi guitar Larry Campbell guitar Tony Garnier bass.

....among the many curious dylan mystery vids on web.

Shows below are w his Forever Tour band, same lineup as above except for Susan T & Van M.

Dylan: Love Minus Zero (live c. 1998-1999)

Dylan: Simple Twist of Fate (live 1999)

Dylan: Just Like a Woman (live c. 1998)

Dylan: My Back Pages (live c. 1998, celtic fiddle version)

Dylan: Desolation Row (live c 1998)

Stuart Ross said...

Really fine entry to close the year. Now I have learned the name Gutzon Borglum. Now I have been converted to Bromo-Seltzer astonishing power. How I have wandered Robert Johnson's hometown. Hey, thanks for the amazing Dylan links. "Knockin'" and "Love Minus Zero" the highlights for me. Wishing you an excellent New Year, Tom.

Hilton said...

Stupid Ideas, indeed. A great assemblage. Happy New Year!

kent said...


For a guy with a claim

To be blind, deaf & lame

You like Ms Helen Keller

Fueled mit nitro-methane.


TC said...

Stuart, Hilton and Kent,

Three such fine friends, more than this humble blog deserves.

No, actually, three's probably about right.

Borglum was a fellow just like the rest of us, only even maybe a little worse.

Never giving up, always chipping away, blasting, blowing up, climbing down, hauling himself back up again, getting discouraged, repairing to the family station in beeville, tomsawyering the insane job onto his hapless son.

He may have been at the top of his profession, but there's the old truism, lonely at the top, and for long and long, I have pondered upon him in his unhappy perch, there on the scaffold, never completing the work, and coming along too early to be included in the safe space of the postmodern resistance to closure.

After all not finishing a symphony gave eg. Schubert plenty of vibe (things that end too soon are invariably popular with short attention span audiences, such as we have currently), but even at that, nobody's got time.

That great period of Dylan's work only becomes generally accessible now, the links have mostly gone up in the past few months, not yet generally known about, are hid behind deceptive titles for safety in concealment, my hunch is they won't last, just a hunch, but BD's lawyers are notorious for extreme hounding.

Some Dylan loyalists I have spoken with are afraid even to discuss this. Now that is some heavy aura.

A certain aura of mystery surrounds the postings, as to source, there are suggestions Tony Garnier was/is involved, sounds plausible though merely gossip ergo perhaps total bs.

That pretty little white tall steeple church in Robert Johnson's hometown, I don't know but my wonderment is centered in a certain historical curiosity... about the possible denominational time-shift, there.

I mean, it's a Catholic Church, yet.

(Andrew Murr is a blues nut by the by, it shows in the work as native religion...)

TC said...

BTW Dylan's guitar chops, at peak in those shows, have since gone the way of most human things (keeping in mind he was just turning 60 then, a virtual baby), in recent years he bangs at piano maybe but no more guitar playing, as a veteran of crippling degenerative arthritis, who once used hands for several things of private interest and harming no one, eg painting, playing guitar, I do take an interest in how these activities are sustained over time, or not sustained and lost, a repeated reminder never to take anything you are able to do for granted, as in one minute you may become unable ever to do it again.

It's in that respect that these videos would be precious.

Too bad we don't have parallel Robert Johnson stash. It's ok to dream, right?