Within Your Reach
As much as I always wanted to, I never made it to Minneapolis until this year. Probably because I was smart enough to know that it wasn’t like every band I cared about would be standing on the street corner waiting for me as I got off the bus. The closest I came was when I was moving back to NYC from Seattle six years ago; a logical overnight stop was just outside of Minneapolis, and I took a morning detour long enough to stand in front of the Let It Be house for a few minutes and take a few pictures.
It was odd to drive around and look at the sights and walk into what was once Oar Folkjokeopus (back when record stores mattered, back when it was a point of pride to know the names of the cool record stores in every city), to walk across the street and have a beer at the CC Club, to stand in front of the stars on the wall at First Avenue (even though it was the weekend they decided to REPAINT them!), and quietly, find the bench that was dedicated to Bob Stinson’s memory, and sit there for a while.
Some friends had recently visited Johnny Cash and June Carter’s grave, and related how they pulled out their iPhone and sang along to a tinny version of “Jackson”. I seized inspiration from that thought and started to play “Here Comes A Regular” until I deemed it maudlin, and instead found a live version of “Little GTO” from CBGB’s and played that instead. I think Bob would have appreciated the latter.
The weekend was capped later that day, sitting in Target Field as the sun went down, as “Unsatisfied” boomed over the loudspeakers. It was serendipity and it was heartwrenching and wonderful all wrapped into one bright shiny moment.
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