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Friday, April 29, 2016

Target: clue.

Bloody hell ... my mirror cracked. No, I didn't smash it with a hammer ... I just looked into it, trying to freaking shave. Jesus, I'm old. Hey .. can I use your mirror?

Yeah, we're cracking mirrors around here, no doubt about it. Looking back on about 30 years of making music under the same moniker, and it's a little stupefying, frankly. True fact: Big Green was founded in 1986 and it's still kind of rolling, give or take a few members. But regardless of the lineup, we still have the same DNA. The clueless core has remained intact ... it hasn't gone sub-critical yet. That's 'cause we're blood, man. Blood brothers, inseparable. (Particularly so, since Matt does most of the work.)

As we continue working on the next raft of songs, I've been taking a few minutes here and there to listen to our previous releases, for context if nothing else. Actually, part of it is taking note of stuff that I hate so that I can resolve not to make the same bonehead plays again and again. (Hey ... how about that as a name for the next album: Bonehead Plays? Anyone?) Then there's the stylistic question: what pigeonhole will we be placed in? And will the pigeon charge us rent? I don't know about you, but my experience tells me that pigeons are lousy landlords. When something goes funky, like a leaking faucet or a broken mirror, they never send a proper workman ... just some brother-in-law pigeon who owes them a favor.

We're type-cast ... and it's all Abe's faultOkay, I digress. Here's the thing. Our first album had a holiday (i.e. Christmas) theme. The second was more of a straight rock record. The third was a mock country album. And yet, when you look us up in any of the music services, we tend to get chucked into "Holiday" or "Seasonal" categories, no matter what genre we assign to the album when we post it. The collection we're working on rolls all over the stylistic map, starting in Alaska and ending up in Madagascar. Some pretty crazy shit, man. Look for it under "Holiday".

Prisoners of our past, in search of a clue. That's the glory of ... that's the story of Big Green. Happy 30th anniversary, kids.

Before the fall.

It's shaping up to be an election to remember. For one thing, the television coverage is so obsessive you couldn't ignore it if you tried. But more importantly, I think, the selection is going to be ... well ... less than optimal, let's say. All right - downright scary. Had to get that out there. The last group of northeastern states favored the front-runners pretty heavily, and it seems almost inevitable that we will be choosing between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. That situation will set in motion some strange dynamics that will likely cut across the standard notions of what each party stands for. I can picture, for instance, Clinton attacking Trump from the right on some aspects of foreign policy. Hard to predict what the effect of that might be.

The man to beat.The most disconcerting part of this likely scenario is the prospect of living through one, maybe two terms of rule by either an egotistical man-child-billionaire or a corporatist Democrat. Of course, I far prefer the latter, mostly because there is some opportunity to push Clinton from the left, but either way we are likely to see a more bellicose stance towards issues of war and peace. Either way we will be moving to the right of Obama along certain political vectors. And Obama is not even a standard progressive; he is a centrist, and very cautious at that.

What are the options to mitigate this? Same as always. Organize, organize, organize. Bernie Sanders may still be the nominee, but win or lose, he has done a tremendous amount of ground work organizing around core progressive issues - policies he terms socialist but which are much more like liberal FDR Democrat material. Regardless, we need to keep Bernie-ism alive even if Bernie is not the nominee, and that means pulling together on the local level. That's how you bring these issues to the fore nationally. We've got the skeleton of a national organization, and there's more than a little sinew on the bones. We should keep it marching forward.

I don't think I have to remind anyone that the Republicans need to be beaten this fall, whoever wins the Democratic nomination. We have to do it to save the Supreme Court and to safeguard the vulnerable. But that doesn't mean we can't continue to make demands in a coordinated and effective way. This is the political revolution Bernie Sanders keeps talking about, it seems to me.

luv u,

jp