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Thursday, April 27, 2006

Back From The Road

Well, hey there, everybody...

Roger Landes and I are back in Taos, New Mexico after 12 days on the road and it's pretty good to be home, I gotta tell ya. We had four fabulous gigs in Lincoln, Nebraska; Hastings, Nebraska; Kansas City, Missouri; and Hutchinson, Kansas; and we loved doin' 'em all. Great reception from everybody, lots of laughter and smiling faces out there, and "Janissary Stomp" CDs sold like hotcakes. Whatta way to make a (sort of) living! Check out Patsy Terrell's blog at her website for some (mostly) unbiased reporting on our gig in Hutchinson, as well as some nice photos of us that Patsy took. Thanks, friend!

Roger and I hit damn near every guitar shop between Taos and Kansas City and back and came home with a couple of nice (and thankfully cheap) finds... ate at Arthur Bryant's Barbeque (damn fine!) and enjoyed the hospitality of Roger's brother Jim and sister-in-law Sheila (who made us the best... no, read that again, I mean it!) BEST fried chicken that's ever been cooked up on planet earth, and apple pie to boot! Thanks so much to Jim and Sheila, and all of Roger's extended family that took such good care of us on the road.

One pretty interesting thing happened on the way home... Roger and I visited my friend David Kyea in Clayton, New Mexico. David and his wife Lani sold me my wonderful house in Taos. David is also a walking dictionary of New Mexico folklore, and he was asking about the word "Janissary." Well, it turns out that all of the elaborate constructs that Roger and I used to justify the title of our CD has yet another fact to back 'em up... Talpa, the neighborhood where my house is located and where Roger and I composed so much of the CD, was settled by half-breed Spanish and Indians in the eighteenth century. The half-breeds were considered lower-class citizens, and shunted to the mouth of the canyon the Comanches used as their conduit to attack Taos. Thus, the lower-class folk would inevitably absorb the first blast from the raiders, sparing the upper-class folks the brunt of the attack. Well, the New Mexican Spanish word for these people is Genizaro or Jenizaro, and guess wherefrom it derives!? The Turkish Yenicheri, meaning of course, Janissary! The people who settled my neighborhood were, in a sense, Janissaries! More will be posted about this on our website real soon! Holy Cow!

Well, I'm coming down from the high of the tour, it's a gray rainy day here in Taos, Neko Case is playing on my CD player, and I'm lamenting the apparent demise of my heretofore-faithful Subaru Outback station wagon that ferried Roger and me on our travels, but blew a head gasket or two on the way down from the mountain in the last 30 miles of our trip. Crap. There went that new Gretsch guitar I wanted. Not to mention setting back recording dates for my maybe-never-to-be-finished new CD, Tinfoil Wings. Double crap.

Oh well. Whatta ya gonna do? I'm a musician, not an investment banker or financial planner, and shit happens. That's the price I pay for getting to do what I do, I guess. Anybody out there want to give me a new car?

Still, I'm glad to be in a place I'm happy to call home... thanks, y'all...


Blogger Patsy Terrell said...

Hey there... I just googled myself to see how my podcasts were coming along in google-dom and found your entry mentioning the blog about your visit to Hutchinson. That was a really neat afternoon. I hope we can get you back here again soon. We all really loved your performance.

5:23 PM  
Blogger Chris Mansel said...

Chipper Thompson the best musician to ever come out of Bay Window Studios! Great blog.

3:04 AM  
Blogger John Thornton said...

Chipper, Five years ago we were both in Jackson Hole. I was you doorman at the Million Dollar Cowboy Bar when you and your step-daughter were in town to take care of some family business. Both of you were very kind and fun to talk to.

A few months later the Postal gods brought me a stack of your tasty tunes.

I want to catch up with you and your music!!! Very important!!!

Jackson has always possessed a certain kind of magic. It was at the door one hot August night five years ago I met a girl who tried her best to get in for free. Six days later we got hitched!.

More later...

Your Friend,

John Thornton
(310) 435-9828

9:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I stayed with Lani & Dave too, in your house. I met her while spinning in Cloudcroft, NM and of course went and stayed with her. We also stayed at Lance's house when he lived there. He and my daughter liked each other for awhile. What awesome people. Nice to know they are fine.

12:10 PM  

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