in citybeat this week, i complain about plastic surgery.
yesterday the l.a. times ran a big, long feature i wrote about dwight yoakam. i went to the set of his forthcoming video for "close up the honky tonks," from his dwight sings buck tribute album coming out next month. and i interviewed him and director fred durst -- yes, the limp bizkit guy. (that's them up there on the set, in the times's photo by anne cusack.) mr. "nookie" just won an award for his feature directing debut (the education of charlie banks). and in fact he did the video b/c he wants dwight the actor in his next movie.
in the previous post i wrote about andras jones and his show that depends upon synchronicity for the wow moments. the dwight yoakam story was an interesting and challenging one to write, and also i think i wrote it better, b/c of some of the synchronicities involved. i can't explain all of it, but different elements made weird little connections for me ... whether it was something as simple as having visited the crystal palace for the first time just this year, or a more abstract impression such as knowing in my own way the different rewards of a mentor/friend relationship and imagining the emotional impact of losing one.
my favorite stories to write are those i learn from. not necessarily anything practical, but a deeper understanding of something. it might be personal, or cosmic, or both. or in between. but, anyway, dwight yoakam spoke with such honesty about buck owens that he could be understood, not just by many who have felt moved by buck's music -- which, at least listening to it both played by the buckaroos in february and as performed by dwight on this album, has a very kind and good-humored and hopeful core -- but also by, well, just about anyone with a heart. it's human, man.
i have received many compliments on it, even from my editors. (most astonishing -- you usually don't hear anything about a piece unless there's something wrong with it.) i am happy with it, which is even rarer. but i think my favorite thing about it is the inside black-and-white photo from 1991 (not shown on the website, alas), of dwight and buck performing together. the 10,000-watt grin on dwight's face kind of says it all.