Some people claim that television is the root of all evil, while others think of television as a best friend. As soon as they get home, they turn it on. Even if they have work to do, family to be with, or friends to see, they do it all with the TV on.
And work it does -- I'm sure I've listened to "Blind Man's Penis" over times by now and I still haven't found the bottom of its well of delights. The story of this hilarious record has been told numerous times. Reprinted below is Trubee's own poignant account, slightly modified from the version that appeared in the September issue of Spin magazine.
Article by John Trubee Stevie Wonder's penis is erect because he's blind. This ludicrous line was invented out of sheer boredom and homicidal frustration as I labored as a cashier in a convenience store in Princeton, New Jersey, in I'd scribble some poems and weird phrases on a legal pad to vent my seething anguish.
Writing on the job was a kind of self-invented therapy to prevent the onset of mental illness due to occupational stress and severe teenage alienation. In late spring ofI bought one of those horrible sleazy tabloids you find in supermarkets by the check-out stand. I had to keep up on my UFO sightings and mass hatchet murders.
In the back pages of the Midnight Globe not the National Enquirer, as erroneously reported elsewhere -- was it Time? I thought to myself: In five minutes of stream of consciousness or unconsciousnessI hammered out the following: Stevie Wonder's penis is erect because he's blind I wanted to get an emotional letter from the jerks in Nashville.
I wanted them to tell me I was crazy.
I wanted there to curse me out in writing so I could show all my friends. Several weeks later I received a letter from Nashville Co-Writers which began: Dear John, We have just received your lyrics and think they are very worthy of being recorded with the full Nashville Sound Production.
I am enclosing a contract of acceptance. They wanted my money. But if I send them the money, they would send me a tape and a record of my lyrics set to music.
Several weeks later I received a 7-inch, 45 RPM record that had a label and grooves only on one side. I immediately rushed upstairs and put this little gem on the turntable for a listen. Over the lamest, most minimal country track was some country hack singing the lyrics I wrote.
They did change one line, though -- they excised all mention of Stevie Wonder and had the singer croon repeatedly "A blind man" instead.
Also enclosed with the disc actually an acetate was a photograph of Ramsey Kearney, the guy who sang the damned thing. Wearing a butterfly-print polyester shirt, Ramsey looked like the perfect man to sing these demented lyrics. Several weeks later, Nashville sent a teeny 3-inch reel tape of the song in extreme stereo -- one channel had only the prerecorded rhythm track while the other channel featured Ramsey singing those idiot lyrics with a little slap-back echo thrown in.
For years I had recorded hours of tapes of my teenage band, prank phone calls, studio demo tapes, synthesizer blurbles, and various recordings of an unusual nature. I wanted all this hard work to be heard, and I loved distributing my tapes simply to annoy people and sometimes even to enlighten or entertain them.
I am a music fanatic, a recording fanatic, and I needed to get this material out. It was my response to a world that seems always to have told me that I am small and worthless.
Putting out music for the hell of it was my way of giving the finger to a universe indifferent to my existence. Craig managed to have the record pressed by Enigma, whom I had never even heard of. I got 50 free promo copies of the record.
We didn't discuss any specific deal. Any sort of greed, bitchery, money hassles, or small-minded haggling might have discouraged Enigma from marketing my record. I felt that they were doing me a favor by bothering to press it and give me some free copies.Welcome to the final round of Vulture’s ultimate Drama Derby to determine the greatest TV drama of the past 25 benjaminpohle.com day a different notable writer was charged with determining the winner.
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