Look Over Yonder See My Name Up in Lights

Though I’m scared this post will come off as excessively showboaty (totally a real word…), I couldn’t resist sharing something so cool.

Last week, writer-editor extraordinaire Greil Marcus published his latest offering in his monthly series “Real Life Rock Top 10” for one of the true promised lands of online music journalism: Pitchfork Each entry “offers incisive commentary on what he’s called everyday culture and found objects—including songs, albums, movies, novels, commercials, TV shows, overheard remarks, and more—making connections across time and circumstance.” He’s been writing this column for three decades, and Pitchfork only recently began publishing them on their website.

Okay, but what does any of this have to do with the Checkered Shirt Guy, AKA me.

His latest column – titled “Stolen Tributes” – includes an entry on Bruce’s concert in Oakland a few weeks ago…you know, the one during which he called me onstage to perform “Growin’ Up” with the E Street Band. And both surreally and inspiringly, Mr. Marcus actually devotes an entire paragraph to yours truly. I could easily copy and paste it here, but I owe it to both Pitchfork and Mr. Marcus to send them any traffic that I can. To read the entry about me, click here and scroll down to #9. But honestly, you should really read the entire column; he’s a helluva writer. And while you’re at it, why not read the first “Real Life Rock Top 10”  column that he wrote for Pitchfork last month, which you can find here.

I know every article outlining how to best build a website advises you never to direct your readers to different people’s writing on other websites…but sorry, I’m in a hyperlinking mood, AND I think all of you will enjoy his thoughts as much as I do:

  • Bookmark this page to easily access all of Mr. Marcus’ upcoming “Real Life Rock Top 10” columns on Pitchfork.
  • If you’d like to read his past “Real Life Rock Top 10” columns published between 1986-2014, they were actually recently collected in a book, which you can purchase here.
  • If you want even more Greil – and why wouldn’t you – Scott Woods created a website entirely devoted to his writing; he posts old and new articles written by Mr. Marcus almost every day.  Check it out here.

And now, excuse me while I go find my bucket list so I can cross off “be mentioned on the pages of Pitchfork.” Hell, who am I kidding – I never even included that on it because there was just no way it would ever happen.

Before I go, I’d be remiss not to thank Jonathan Pont for notifying me of the column, Scott Woods for creating such a great website that has allowed me to intimidatingly procrastinate many an hour by getting lost in Mr. Marcus’s writing, and of course Greil Marcus himself both for mentioning me in his column and more generally just for being such a fantastic, inspiring writer. He’s spent a lifetime chronicling specific cultural moments through his unique perspective; reading his columns provide an educational AND entertaining – a rare but cherished artistic combination – walk down the history of modern culture. His writing will undoubtedly be read for many years to come, and I don’t think a writer can receive a higher compliment than that. Much deserved.


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