I have a look that gets mistaken for things. Once, at a Long John Silver's in Frederick, Maryland, I was asked by the teenage cashier, "Are you from Iran?" When I answered, "I'm from Mt. Airy," she was slightly underwhelmed. Then, just a few months ago, in Nashville, a random stranger in a coffee shop asked me if I was from Syria. There are countless others examples of this misinterpretation, but I won't repeat them. It's kind of bizarre, actually.
The truth is that my father comes from Ireland--as in, he was born and raised there but moved to the America when he came of age. My mother is heartily Italian--as in, her father was born and raised in Italy, to the point where he never learned to write English. So I'm one of those hybrid humans.
I write this to convey that it might seem strange to have a first cousin who is extremely pale and extremely Irish. When I go to weddings on my dad’s side of the family, no one believes that I’m one of ‘them.’ They all make fun of me, in fact. But when I go home with the hottest chick there they’re all like, wuh-POW, sucka-punch all up in their collective esophaguses, ya know what I’m sayin’?
Just kidding. In all actuality, I have never had a wedding tryst. One day I hope to change that, but for now, I just go to weddings to eat and get drunk. And since getting drunk isn’t as appealing a concept as it once was, I should probably transfer that urge into getting my tryst on. I’ll let you know if and when that happens. I’ll blog the shit out of it, in fact.
Speaking of blogging, tonight deserves a brief photo recap. When your wonderfully gifted Irish cousin returns to the States for a month-long bender, one must rise to the occasion.
You remember my cousin John, aka JT Songs, who was handpicked by David Berman to play his Drag City-sponsored publicity stunt last September. Then he was handpicked again by Mr. Berman to open two sold-out shows at Webster Hall in March. While all his songs are great, it’s “Song From Limbo” that firmly establishes his status as a major artist. Even if you’ve listened to it several hundred times, it’s worth another listen. Go here to do just that…
And then you meet a fellow Irish singer/songwriter that your cousin has been talking about endlessly, and you appreciate the fact that this is a decent chap.
And then that decent chap asks you to listen to the first song off his yet-to-be-released new album and it blows your mind into smithereens.
Ladies and gentlemen, this is Niall Connolly:
I dare you to not listen to this song five times in a row, then realize how much you like it and listen to it ten or fifteen more.
The lyrics, energy, and emotion of “She Makes Me Want to Be Clean” make me want to punch myself in the face repeatedly, then scream with raucous abandon. Listen to it now, then listen to it again and again and again. Gee, I wonder if this is gonna make my “Best of 2006” mix…
“Come drink with us ‘til dawn,
you’ll see my good side
“She makes me want to be clean,
Show my bright side always,
Show my bright side always.”
“But I like you
and I don’t know why,
I like you
And I don’t know why.”
I will close with a picture of the rock stars and yours truly. When you’re not a brilliantly gifted creative talent, you align yourself with those who are. If you stick around the Blessed Ones for long enough the world will start to mistake you for one of them. That is my goal.