Larry the Cable Guy redelivers me to the world of “Cracker Soul”

It’s one fine day. No work. I got up. I ate. I went to Jason’s Deli. I had the Club Lite. I don’t like the new bread. It’s kind of rough around the ages. I shopped at Kroger. I said: “Hello. How are you?” to the meat lady. And did the same to the lady who seems to keep the right-wall area with the bread and organics in great working order. This young guy comes up to me on the aisle with the skin lotions. He works there. He said: “Smell this. It’s vanilla. I bet I could get all the women with that.” It was surreal. You had to be there. I came back to the crib. I went for a walk. I have been thinking about writing a book forever. I have got a rough theme. It would be, like Kris says, “partly fact and partly fiction.” It would be, in all likelihood, controversial. I’ll give you a hint. Flying bird dogs. Does that make you crave for it? No? Well, that’s why I’ve got to think more about this thing. The walk was nice. I came back and sat down to this Internet on this one fine day.

I surfed into Cracker’s Web site. It was on purpose. This was because I watched late last night the History Channel show “Only in America with Larry the Cable Guy.” Larry is a guilty pleasure. I shouldn’t like him. But he has just that right amount of crassness combined with weirdness. You might even learn something.

Larry was at a Florida ranch where he extracted bull semen. He helped drive cattle across a marsh and into a barge and onto an island ranch. All of this was in Florida. The ranch foreman or owner said the origin of the term “cracker” came from Georgia folks who migrated to Florida. They came with their whips to help herd cows. The whips made the cracking sound. Hence came “cracker.” It’s sometime used as a derogatory word black people use for whites. And that’s all I’ve got to say about that, Gump. I’m not sure if my description of the rancher’s explanation was exactly as he said it, but it’s close enough. Because this was not the Cracker site to which I clicked.

I started listening to Cracker in the 90s. I continue to believe they were one of that decade’s best rock bands. Cracker, which has a dual life with the band Camper Van Beethoven, combines rock, some California country and whatever else it is they do. I haven’t listened to nor have I heard any Cracker songs from beyond the turn of the century. “Turn of the century” makes them sound old, doesn’t it? The band remains. That is it. It’s not bad that they just remain. It’s a good remain. In fact, it’s fantastic.

Cracker continues to produce, perhaps, what would result from Led Zeppelin meets the Eagles. I don’t know if that is accurate, but I mean it as a compliment. I guess they are too explicit for radio, although a couple of their hits are played on Classic Rock stations.

A number of great videos, some dating back to the 90s, can be found on the Cracker site. Perhaps the most interesting is “Yalla, Yalla.” Cracker driving force David Lowery explains the name comes from Arabic, kind of an expression like the Spanish “vamanos”  when used as a command. It is a speed-demon rocker of a song that, according to Lowery, doesn’t take any sides in the Iraq War. Lowery later explains that he was against the Iraq War because the war in Afghanistan was what deserved our nation’s attention. As I felt and feel, the U.S. needed to get out of Iraq leaving it in a stable state. This piece is not for arguing. Enough of arguing, already. I must also warn that “Yalla, Yalla” has some very suggestive scenes of military personnel whose videos came from You Tube. Please read Lowery’s explanation before watching.


There are more than two kick-ass videos on the Cracker site. Here is number two. It’s a dynamite Cracker-style country-like tune called Friends with Patterson Hood. Dysfunctional friendships such as is described are probably more common than anyone will imagine. Some of my friendships have been dysfunctional, I make no admission nor charge as who’s to blame. By the way, Patterson Hood is guitarist and vocalist for the Southern Rock band Drive-by Truckers, I had to look that up. You’re welcome. Oh. Okay the song is ‘Friends’ and it’s played with Patterson Hood. He’s the guy with the beard and glasses. I’m so confused.

If you enjoy these two songs. More rest upon the Cracker video site. Happy Friday. Oh, and “One Fine Day” is a bluesy, somewhat spiritual tune. I’ve had one fine day today. But it hasn’t exactly been like “One Fine Day.” So remember, spring forward this weekend.

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