Ode to Willie P. (William Patrick Bennett)

Willie said it well enough, (as he always could)...

"Sometimes it's rough, but it's always good"...

I guess sometimes 'good enough' is as good as it gets...

sometimes you roll the dice, and there's cause to shout...

other times it's not as nice, and you just crap out...

sometimes you're well advised to hedge all your bets...

...

Willie was the crown prince of 'hoot'n'holler'...

never once just for the sake of a dollar;

a trouper troubadour, inspiration to us all...

Willie P. Bennett left us a legacy, of heartfelt lyric and melody

the hobo's taunt, echo of the wild goose call...

...

I asked Willie once for advice on playing mandolin;

Willie blinked twice, fixed me with that grin... said

"of course, it's a matter of opinion, but if you really want mine...

it's not about speed or ability; more about soul and melody...

just play it half fast, man; everything will work out fine..."

(insert half-assed mandolin break here, if desired...)

...

Willie was the crown prince of 'hoot'n'holler';

never once just for the sake of a dollar...

a trouper troubadour... inspiration to us all...

Willie P. Bennett left us a legacy, of heartfelt llyric and melody...

the hobo's taunt; echo of th wild goose call...

... a simple, silly ditty; as easily delivered  'acapella' as with any instrumentation... the first quote is directly from Willie, scrawled on a hand painted poster that I had made (with a rough portrait of Wlilie in the 'Lucky Ones' period, for a concert at Peterborough's Market Hall...) "Sometimes it's rough, but it's always good" scrawled on it in ballpoint pen when I asked him to scribe it... I have that poster still; and always will... the 'advice' on mandolin approach is paraphrased, but essentially accurate... in recent years, there has been a trend in various towns (and most certainly this one) to hold a 'Blue Valentine' memorial concert to 'Willie P.'... this song was originally debuted with myself and Willie's old touring partner Washboard Hank (Fred Eaglesmith's  band, back when Ralph was on bass) on dual (not dueling) mandolins, (half-assed instrumental  break guaranteed); at an early Blue Valentine show here in town. love to all, especially William Patrick Bennett. He was the real deal. d.

 

 

 

 

 

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