Saturday, March 25, 2017
Life, The Universe, Errol Flynn, and Erryting
So, the universe presents us with this.
That's a performance at the Sydney Fest from 2012. Sydney's in Australia. It's the antipodes. Or as they say around here, you can't get there from heah. The band's name is the Jolly Boys. They're from Jamaica.
They're playing a Steely Dan song. Steely Dan was a Horace Silver cover band from New Jersey. Close enough. The original version of the song features a solo by a computer programmer playing an electric sitar, because of course it would. The computer programmer is famous, if that's the word I'm looking for, for helping to produce a compiler for ms-dos programs. This may not turn out to be a growth industry if Microsoft Windows becomes popular. You never know, Windows might catch on.
Why are the Jolly Boys playing in Sydney? Because Errol Flynn. Errol Flynn was a Tasmanian devil, until Hollywood made him famous and he became American, which is a sideways move, I think. He got rich playing English people in American movies, because Russell Crowe and Mel Gibson weren't available. In 1946, Errol Flynn took his Captain Blood money, bought an island off the coast of Jamaica, and threw a party that only lasted for ten years or so, with a couple of bathroom breaks. He liked some of the local musicians who played mento music, which is the zygote of reggae. He hired them to play at his party, and named them The Jolly Boys. The name stuck.
I was going to say that Errol Flynn eventually died from cirrhosis, a bad back, drug abuse, hepatitis, alcoholism, tuberculosis, malaria, several venereal diseases, none minor, and the lingering shock of seeing Dolores del Rio naked, but I figure it will save time if I just say Errol Flynn died of a severe case of Errol Flynn.
So a Jamaican guy wearing Richard Nixon's bowling pants and Tony Manero's Qiana shirt is singing a New York song at least figuratively about Las Vegas in Australia, while a guy in Maine watches it. He is a brand of awesome. He survived Errol Flynn. Even Errol Flynn couldn't manage that.