Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Harry Chapin

This is another one that actually harkens back to the Blue House, where I heard this for the first time. Dad went out with a friend for a beer-run one evening, and came back with not only that, but also a couple of big containers of popcorn. The next thing I know, side three of this album was playing. It started off with "Cat's In The Cradle", then "Taxi", and finally "Circle", which almost sounded like something from Sesame Street. I liked what I was hearing, never having heard it before, and this album got a few more spins while we were living in the next few residences.

Sometime toward the end of the summer of 1981, Dad came home with a page from The Seattle Times, with the headline that told about Harry Chapin's death in a car accident over in New York. I couldn't believe it. He just seemed like such a great and funny guy, as well as a wonderful songwriter.

One of my other favorite songs by him on that live album was "30,000 Pounds Of Bananas". I didn't quite catch onto the rather tragic story of a guy who jack-knifed while hauling all that fruit...I just enjoyed the chorus, the way the song sped up, and John Wallace's ultra-low voice when he was called on to sing. After reading the news, I went out for a spin on the sidewalk on my Bigwheel. I had the song going through my head, pedaling along, but as the song played faster, I began pedaling faster along with it. I was racing up and down the sidewalk like a lunatic before a neighbor lady stopped me, maybe out of genuine concern I wouldn't harm myself, but maybe she'd had enough of the noise as well. That was my tribute to Harry that day!