Thursday, April 08, 2010

Unsung Genius

The excitable boy.
A dark cynic with a cult following.
Poster boy for the drab.
An unsung genius.
All this, and Warren Zevon, too.

When you say the name Warren Zevon, it's usually followed by an audible yelp of "Awwwoooooo..Werewolves Of London.." quoting Zevon's most popular hit from 1978.
No sophomore slump for this golden boy of the gruesome, sometimes drab view of life.
Excitable Boy put this transplanted Californian-by-way-of-Illinois on the musical map. Being roomies with (future Mac stars) Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks, had its benefits, as well as being chummy with the likes of Jackson Browne, Bonnie Raitt, and the Eagles, who all contributed to his first major label debut.

But things finally came to fruition for Warren (Zivotovsky in real life) with Excitable Boy. Noir-ish tunes like "Lawyers, Guns And Money" exuded a "dark side," while tongue-in-cheek-erry was the order of the day with "Roland The Headless Thompson Gunner" and "Johnny Strike Up The Band."
I know a good friend of mine'll raise hell if I don't make mention of his fave "Nighttime In The Switching Yard" as well. (right, Edwin?)

Of course, we can't deny the penultimate track "Werewolves Of London."
Undeniably Warren Zevon at his most humorously macabre, bar none.
Though his untimely demise leaves a seemingly unfillable void, the wealth of music left behind by Zevon is enough to last us for our, if not, all time.


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