Friday, May 27, 2005

Jill's Journal

Jill Sobule, one of the deftest word-jugglers in the songwriting business, has a journal on her Web site. It's fascinating reading. Here's a recent entry:

I am in the car with Tony (road manager, web master, rock therapist) on our way to Cincinnati. Last night, I played a Christian college. I was all, "how far do I go?" Do I cuss, play Soldiers of Christ, or Jesus Was a Dreidel Spinner? Do I put out and sell the Kissed a Girl T-shirts (the one with the two “love is” silhouette girls kissing on the front with the sad crying boy in the back)? I wanted to be respectful, yet be myself. I was going to wear my peace sign dress but at the last moment remembered, "don’t some Christians think that represents a broken cross and is a sign of ... Satan?" Are these kids the spawn of Jerry Falwell and Cotton Mather, or are they just nice students whose parents made them go to this school? Or maybe they are true believers, but also really cool. Maybe I had to look at my own prejudices.

As I walked in, it seemed like any other small campus. The students' look was from hippy jam band, to alt rock, to smart bookish. I saw a few pretty great haircuts (in Grand Rapids!). What was I expecting, Salem, 1692?

So, from the first song, the crowd was with me. They got all the nuances, dark humor, and layers in the lyrics. They were very enthusiastic. Then came the time to do ... a "homo" song. I introduced Under The Disco Ball as a song about the "evils" of the gay agenda. They laughed and seemed, at least at that moment, to be on the right side (my side) of the cultural divide. Damn, on one hand, I wish I could have been a minor Buster the Bunny.