Sturgill Simpson is a (relatively) new country singer that everyone seems to want me to like. I like some of the musical aspects of his new album, but his voice is just too twangy for me. So even if he’s singing about drugs or whatever, it all just sounds country to me.
Simpson is a funny guy though, he says that “Turtles All the Way Down” is a song that everyone is talking about bit no one gets what it is about. “It’s about drugs. And other stiff.” When the song is over he says he was siting on a porch and a friend said, “Hey man, you ever heard of DMT?” He said “Nope.” I hadn’t either but evidently that was the inspiration for that song.
“Time After All” is a pretty song with some wicked guitar playing.
“Life of Sin” is a fast song with what I consider a pretty typical country music riff. Simpson also has a big powerful voice which he uses to good effect here.
He introduces “Water in a Well” by saying he’s gonna do one for the ladies “I’m just bullshitting, they’re all for the ladies.” It is a nice ballad that goes on pretty long.
I’d like to enjoy Simpson more as he has been experimenting with interesting ideas, but really, I just can’t get past his voice.
[READ: June 5, 2016] Missouri Boy
I genuinely had no idea what this graphic novel would be about. I was vaguely familiar with Myrick’s work but wouldn’t have been able to pick it our. Although after reading this I see that his artistic style is quite distinct and his drawings of himself and his father from back in the 1980s are really affecting and powerful.
The overall story of this book is quite simple (and brief) and is done in short episodes.
It begins with the narrator’s birth in 1961. On the day that he and his twin were born, his grandmother died.
We jump forward few years to where he an his brother are making paper airplanes and flying them in the yard–completely carefree.
In 1970 we see their family’s firecracker tree–the tree upon which they draped a huge roll all over this tree every 4th of July and then oooh’d and ahh’d as they made a ton of noise exploding in the yard.
In 1972, the family suffered a very sad loss when his much older brother was arrested–the whole scene of them dressed up in the courtroom is especially powerful.
My favorite anecdote comes from 1973 and is called underwear pond. It is about he and his friends who would swim in a local pond and then throw their underwear into it–he imagines what might happen when it is drained someday and they find a layer of underpants. A less fun anecdote involves getting peed on!
There is some sadness and some danger in the story (who thinks hanging off the side of a building is fun?) as well as a job he will never forget and the girl who worked there with him.
And then finally in 1985 he sets out for California to be with a girl. The drive is freeing and the scene of him at the ocean is really lovely.
There’s not a lot to this story, but it conveys a lit in its few pages.