Friday, May 19, 2017

L’Arche Across America — Day 10 — Music

If I don’t write about music, you will not understand our journey. Since leaving Haverhill ten days ago, we have almost never been without music.

Woody, whose knowledge of rock and roll is nothing less than encyclopedic, is our music leader. He brought along a large paper bag full of CDs, and every afternoon one of the CDs comes out, goes into the CD player, and leads us to our next destination.

Top picks on Woody’s music list are anything by the Grateful Dead, as well as Jethro Tull and The Essential Bob Dylan.

Wednesday, on the way into Sea-Tac, we sang loud choruses of “The Times They Are A-Changing” and “Like a Rolling Stone.”

Thanks to Jethro Tull and the full 43-minute version, Todd and Woody both report an inability to get “Thick as a Brick” out of their heads.

Doris’s taste is for anything Elvis, so for her 70th birthday on Wednesday, we played Elvis tunes all the day long.

John’s taste runs to anything Sixties, especially The Beatles. The Sixties is where John’s music and Woody’s intersect as in a Venn diagram.

While Woody’s taste is more esoteric, he brightens up at many items on John’s playlist, including “Gimme Shelter” by the Rolling Stones, “The Sound of Silence” by Simon and Garfunkel, and “Proud Mary” by Credence Clearwater Revival.

Music has driven so much about this trip, beginning with our ambitious itinerary. We saw the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on our second day on the road; and yesterday, in Seattle, Woody visited the gravesite of Jimi Hendrix.

Still ahead: San Francisco and The Grateful Dead, as well as Venice Beach and The Doors!

Meanwhile, we assistants have our own tastes and tend to follow the rule of, S/he who drives drives the playlist.

When Todd is driving, we sometimes segue into a Top-40 mode, listening to millennial hits that Woody doesn’t even recognize and may scowl at.

My taste is considered just weird. During quiet moments, Jane and I have been heard to belt out hymns from a songbook I found beside a trash can in South Dakota.

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