The Random Griffith

Damn if I don’t have an open mic jinx

Posted in Uncategorized by Jackson Griffith on 05/01/2010

This is the third time in a row.

I get a ticket to draw for a slot at open mic night, and I get either the last slot or the penultimate one. This was the second week in a row at the Fox & Goose where this has happened, and the last time at Old Ironsides it was the same thing. I mean, I know it’s the luck of the draw and everything, and I’m an Occam’s razor kinda guy, so I’m reasonably certain that there’s no grand conspiracy of folk music purists who want to ensure that my music is not inflicted on ye younge and faire maidens and such. Well, maybe there is some kind of secret druid overlord hiding in the beer tap at the F&G, pulling strings to keep me from playing my goddamn stuff.

Got to go on tonight just as pretty much everyone else who’d already performed was packing it out the door, which is a nice feeling, lemme tell you. Did my circa-1937 love song I wrote to a certain waste of time; I guess I need to write a few “fuck you, now get down on all fours and back that thang up” boogie tunes so I can eliminate that pussy-whipped piece of sentimentality from my repertoire for good. By St. Valentine’s Day I probably should have a whole batch of verbally abusive “bitch, now I’m done driving you around the bend, where’s my goddamn sandwich?” numbers ready to go, and I should have learned enough laughably douchey banter from the guidos on Jersey Shore to come off like a real tool between songs by then, too. And I also sang “Letters and Numbers” and a song I wrote when I was all butthurt and sensitive about something; it’s titled “Johnny Cash in Heaven” (see lyrics below).

I really am going to become a mean as a bag of rattlesnakes in a the trunk of a pentecostal preacher’s old Dodge Polara blues singing prick bastard, so such mawkish sentimentality will soon be a real anomaly from me. So enjoy it while you can.

Johnny Cash in heaven, I think you understand
When this whole world comes tumbling down, what happens to a man
Who’s been chewed up hard by circumstances beyond his control
And fears for losing everything, even his soul
Wandering in darkness crying, nothing left to lose
Singing these sad, sad blues
Johnny Cash in heaven

Johnny Cash in heaven, tell me what you know
’Cause I ain’t worked in so long, and got nowhere to go
And every day I hit a new bottom, can’t move on up
I’m wrestling with some demons that got me all messed up
But when I listen to your records, they bring me peace
Find some peace for me now
Johnny Cash in heaven

Ain’t stuck in Folsom Prison, just a lonesome vale of tears
Paralyzed by hatred for myself and gripped with fear
I met a woman, fell in love and opened up my heart
And then one day she said goodbye and my world fell apart
I feel like a stranger in a once-familiar place
Spinning hard into space
Johnny Cash in heaven

I know you ain’t Jesus, though you might be a saint
’Cause you walked through adversity, and you stood tall through pain
And I know you once walked this way, tell me where to go
I’ll put one foot in front of the other, never felt so low
But I’ve got faith there’s someplace better, show me a sign
And I will walk the line
Johnny Cash in heaven

Johnny Cash in heaven, I think you know me well
I’m simple but I’m complicated, inside this shell
And yes, I’ve got a dark side, sometimes it drags me down
And I can feel that river rising, think I’m gonna drown
But I know you stood where I stand now, on a cold, dark night
And it’s gonna be all right
Johnny Cash in heaven
Johnny Cash in heaven
Johnny Cash in heaven
Johnny Cash in heaven

Oh, and today I went to the rose garden at McKinley Park. They cut down all the rosebushes. Good. I fucking hate flowers. Fuck you. 😉 —Jackson Griffith