I’m very fond of The Jayhawks, even the allegedly “lean” years without Mark Olson, and was one of the faithful who came out before their reunion. Gary Louris is a massively talented songwriter, and while the twang may have been more subdued during his tenure, only a fool would dismiss those years as lesser. (I happen to think The Sound of Lies is one of the best releases of the 90s.)
Here is a wonderful “reprise” version of Stumbling Through The Dark (written by Louis and Matthew Sweet) that closes Rainy Day Music. It’s a wonderful confluence of simple elements: the slight tremble in Louris’ voice; the hushed harmonies; the gentle strum of the guitar; and finally, the slight echo in the background suggesting an empty room – all coming together to highlight the vulnerability of the narrator’s words in a most beautiful way.
Making fun of billionaires who are clueless about economics, and lack the menschood to admit their mistakes, serves a couple of functions. It reminds the audience that being rich doesn’t mean that you know what you’re talking about; it also provides other rich people some incentive to think before they speak, and maybe even do some homework before preaching to the rest of us.
A roar greeted the opening notes of “Just the Way You Are,” and up in Section 106 I could see some women of a certain age singing along and dabbing their eyes. When the song was done, Joel turned to the audience and said, “And then we got divorced.”
Having a bad job for a summer or whatever, that’s a story that you get to tell. But being in the wrong career and knowing it? And having to muster up the courage as an adult to make that change? That’s the worst.