"Every Scratch, Every Click, Every Heartbeat": The reference is to Elvis Costello's song "45" which, to oversimplify matters, conflates music and life. All the same, "bass and treble heal every hurt" and though this series doesn't feature the dreaded soundtrack to my life, it might be said that each entry spotlights "a song to sing to do the measuring."
This time around, my wanderlust is just along for the ride in Talking Heads' "The Big Country" and "Cities."
"There will be time, there will be time
To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet..."
(The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock by T.S. Eliot)
But there will be times the faces slip. I’ve had times I've met or had brushes with musical artists behind their public masks, or at least at variance with my perception. I met a gracious and gentlemanly Tom Waits, usually quirky and cantankerous, or seemingly so, in the lobby of Los Angeles’ Wiltern Theater, when I saved him from the clutches of over-adoring but inconsiderate fans. That’s not the way it started out when I initially dismissed the idea of joining the throng — as much as I wanted to — but who says Tom waits for no man? He caught my eye when he saw my retreat and subtly beseeched me over, at which time I complied, coming around to the back of the crowd. At this point, he used my arrival as a pretext to turn away from the increasingly-boisterous hangers-on to greet me, meet me — he thanked me, too -- and converse with a very startled and grateful me.
Then there was a less than angry young Elvis Costello during his angry young man days. A friend had slipped a backstage pass from a San Diego show — personally autographed to “my friend” because he liked my Motown-linked Berry Gordy, Jr. nickname — for me to try to use at a Los Angeles show. It worked, stumping security who figured I was somehow on intimate terms with Elvis. They let me backstage, where I, while I was waiting for Elvis to come out, plied myself — and a few starlets — with free drinks. Justine Bateman kept eyeing me... I think. I met John Doe and Exene Cervenka from from X. And Tom Petty. Finally a Elvis came out to much fanfare, and while I hated to meet and run and be “walking ‘round [like] a physical jerk,” I did have a friend waiting (and waiting and waiting) in the car and had I promised her an autograph. So I rushed and gushed my time with Elvis, being first to do so — before his first drink! — and giving him the opportunity to be rude and put me off... but he didn’t. He was very nice, accommodating with the autograph, and affable in conversation. I was feeling pretty good when I left... waiting for Miss Bateman, though she never showed up.