Friday, May 27, 2011

Nobody’s Right If Everybody’s Wrong

There are probably several reasons the Tallman Trask at Duke University and I have kept in touch after my retirement from community/destination marketing at the end of 2009.

We’re both transplanted westerners.  We both frequently display an often inscrutably dry sense of humor and we’re both devotees of the music sub-genre, “country-rock” the beginnings of which I probably picked up not from growing up on a ranch but as a 15 year old from the Beatles’ 1964 “I’ll Cry Instead.”

A folk now turned more country-rock anthem, “For What It’s Worth” has been running through my mind for several weeks now after he passed along that Buffalo Springfield with several members of that now legendary, but short-lived, group might be coming to DPAC.

The lyrics to their memorable 1967 hit penned by Stephen Stills shed light on why my political affiliation is Independent and they are as current to today’s Tea Party fueled partisan vitriol as they were forty-four years ago, largely because Stills didn’t appear worried about the specific controversies as much as the he was about the intensity and polarization at the time as noted in this excellent breakdown of the song.

There’s something happening here.
What it is ain’t exactly clear.
There’s a man with a gun over there,
Telling me I got to beware.
I think it’s time we stop, children, what’s that sound?
Everybody look what’s going down.

There’s battle lines being drawn.
Nobody’s right if everybody’s wrong.
Young people speaking their minds,
Getting so much resistance from behind.
It’s time we stop, hey, what’s that sound?
Everybody look what’s going down.

What a field day for the heat.
A thousand people in the street,
Singing songs and carrying signs,
Mostly say, “Hooray for our side.”
It’s time we stop, hey, what’s that sound?
Everybody look what’s going down.

Paranoia strikes deep:
Into your life it will creep.
It starts when you’re always afraid.
You step out of line, the man come and take you away.

Buffalo Springfield, which formed just as I graduated from high school, disbanded just 25 month later but was the springboard for not only Stills to Crosby, Stills and Nash and another sometimes-member of that group the prolific Neil Young, who started his current tour at DPAC; Jim Messina to later Loggins and Messina fame; and Richie Furay a later bandmate with Poco.

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