Friday, September 5, 2008

Billy Falcon

Life, especially with me and music, is uncanny.

Allow the tale to unfold here before you. I went to a tiny high school, drove an old Camaro that I actually thought was cool. I listened to loud rap music. I had two 15" Kicker brand woofers in my back seat. As high school neared an end, I found myself rejecting rap music, openly questioning my choice and tastes in music. And started to ask what was the music for me. I got back into the Eagles and Steve Miller, and all the once-great-junk that became classic rock radio. (One simply has to turn on the radio anywhere, anytime, to hear a track off of Boston's eponymous album). So anyway, I was listening to KFM93.9, the Chico rock station. And I heard this song.

I dated this beautiful girl who tore my mind apart. But I loved her, and some events that didn't happen caused what needed to happen and we broke up. A lot of times. There was this song...

I graduated from high school in the spring of 1991. And I had this crappy Camaro. With a loud stereo. And this song called Power Windows played on KFM and really got to me. There was all kinds of stuff in it that made me think, like what is a 'statue of Mary', why would anyone have a '69 Dart? Because we had my stepmom's sister's old dead dart in the back field. Not a cool car. At least, not as cool as a '73 Camaro. It was a time and place because at 18, I imagined myself a simple needs kind of guy. And having your gal in your arm 'rumbling down the highway' was something I could dig. The Camaro had no air conditioning.

So I went to Warehouse records and purchased a cassette single. Lucky that the whole record wasn't available yet. I bought just a few of those cassette singles, and I'm sure I have Billy Falcon's Power Windows in storage. The B side was this really interesting music. An acoustic guitar and voice about a guy and a girl and 'all she had on was the radi-oh-boy'. I played it for the girl and I tried to explain, "I like this."

Over one year later, about the fall of 1992, I began to get music on Compact Disc. And there in the racks was an album that caught my eye. Pretty Blue World, by Billy Falcon. I was single. So you might wonder where all of this is going?

About a week ago, I played and sang the two songs from the cassette single from memory. I never really learned them, but they are in there so deep I just played them. Last week. In Kentucky, September 2008. So I'm telling my songwriting girlfriend all about this album, and how it was my first real singer/songwriter album, though it took a lot of years to realize this. Pretty Blue World masquerades as pop music, in the vein of 1990's Bon Jovi. No coincidence really. And if I had bought the album on cassette, it would be unavailable to me in that moment. All I had to do was go to my music server and play the tracks.

As I played Oh Boy and Power Windows, I said, "I wonder what happened to him. I checked him out back in 1997 or 98 when I was getting into songwriters." (But I didn't turn up much about him). So I put it in the computer. The computer playing back the CD versions at that moment. He was playing in Nashville on Thursday. He lives here. He's been here since about the time I wondered what he was up to. He's a hit songwriter.

Three days ago we moved to Nashville. Last night I saw, and met, and listened to Billy Falcon. That was cool. He was good, and gracious and sincere and dedicated Power Windows to me and Debbie.

Some things that shouldn't be forgotten sometimes are. But sometimes things just wait to be rediscovered. Billy Falcon, "I like this."

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