WUMB December Program Guide

That’s Right, I’m Not From Texas

As I’m not on the air on a regular basis, doing a show is more fun than it used to be. Work on the air on my birthday? Sure. Come back from a trip and go on the air the first day back? OK. Because I’m on the air sharing music and stories that are enjoyable to pass along.

Recently a small portion of my brain – probably stemming from exposure to celebrity gossip magazines and “Reality” TV – has wondered if I’m a little cursed on the air. Now, I’m a rational guy, but I did happen to notice that when I went away in January, three entertainers died that week (David Bowie most notably). In late April I was filling in on the air. Fifteen minutes before going on, I was checking the internet for any information tidbits that might be useful for the show…and I saw that Prince had passed away. Two minutes after going on the air the phone rings. A listener asks, “did you hear about Prince, is it true?”
May 18th was my next time on the air. Jokingly, I considered e-mailing friends I had told about the show that, “I hope nobody else we care about passes away.” During the show, after playing Lyle Lovett’s “That’s Right, You’re Not From Texas”, the phone rings. It was a WUMB member who lives in Texas. “I heard you talking about Texas… I thought you were about to play some Guy Clark; did you know that Guy Clark passed away?” A very articulate thought formed in my brain. It went something like this: “Noooooooooooooo!” Not again. What a year…

A pair of DJ’s from my old radio station in Cambria, California called The Radio Flyer and Stinky Ned introduced me to Clark in the 1990’s. Thank you, guys. And of course, here at WUMB I’ve gotten to know Guy’s music much more. As a fan of songs that really build characters and stories, parting is such sweet sorrow. Guy Clark’s first album came out in 1975 (by then some of his songs had already been covered famously by others, such as Jerry Jeff Walker). That means I came along to the Guy Clark party 20 years late. So why am I so significantly bummed out by his passing? Maybe it’s that a Guy Clark song brings me so much into the atmosphere of the song’s setting. Waiting For A Train, The Cape… What a standard bearer he was of a song’s story that pulls you in. Clark and his songwriting/musical partner Verlon Thompson crafted together tasty pickings and lyrics that make me feel like I am in Texas. That make me feel like I am a hanger-on of the legendary backyard jams with Guy and his wife Susanna, Verlon, Rodney Crowell, Emmylou Harris, and a young Steve Earle. Like I want to be in that limousine to Memphis (Baby Took A Limo To Memphis).

I can only imagine what it must be like to have a musician’s perspective on Guy Clark (for that, Mark Erelli wrote a great piece on his website for his June 2016 newsletter). As merely a fan, perhaps the next best thing was getting to see Guy Clark perform with three of his fans and fellow master songcrafters: John Hiatt, Lyle Lovett, and Joe Ely. It was the four of them on stage together trading songs. They did two or three tours like that. Thanks goodness I saw one.

Let’s take those great memories of Guy Clark and his music to feel better. Get some Home Grown Tomatoes and some friends together, put on some music, clap your hands, and enjoy some Texas Cookin’. Oh, mama, aint that Texas Cookin’ good. Oh, mama, I’d eat it everyday if I could.

Well, maybe you shouldn’t eat it every day. But once in a while, absolutely. Especially, come to think of it, on Sunday June 12th at Mothers Rest by Carson Beach in Boston. That’s the WUMB BBQ. Come enjoy fabulous BBQ (does that count as Texas Cookin’?) from Blue Ribbon BBQ, hear perfect live music for the occasion from the one and only Tim O’Brien, and share your stories of Guy Clark while you chow down. I’d love to hear them.
And besides having a great time you’ll be supporting the radio station that’s played Guy Clark for years.

-Perry Persoff

2 responses to “That’s Right, I’m Not From Texas”

  1. Caroline says:

    Love this article. I’m a “how I miss KOTR” listener from the Central Coast, spending 3 was in MA. Love having WUMB to listen to while here ( WMVY as well) now I know why your station is a favorite!

    • Perry Persoff says:

      Hi Caroline!

      You were a KOTR listener, too??!!?? No way! “Way!” That’s amazing!

      Thank you for the kind words about the article. And thank you so much for making the K-OTTER/Central Coast connection. Wow, that’s really special.

      You are in Boston for both some flakey and some great weather. Enjoy your visit.

      Please wave hello to the Central Coast for me. Do you ever go to Morro Bay? Pop into Coalesce Bookstore there and say hello to Linna, Sher, and the rest of the folks who work there for me.

      And the next time you hear me on the “air” (or would that be “the stream”?), feel free to call and say hello.

      –Perry P.
      WUMB/Boston.

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