Peter Chapman Poetry


Last night's Tarbox Ramblers gig at Abilene was a revelation. I'd heard about the band but had never heard their music. This guy Michael Tarbox is definitely from another planet. It is so rare to encounter a musician with his total effortless mythic submersion. I was reminded of whirling dervishes or speaking in tongues, watching him sing and play that drone-sounding guitar stuff. And the off-hand way he'd flick his left wrist along the frets with the bottlenecked finger, smiling, so gone. I could not have been more moved and not had a fucking heart attack, and believe me, in 40+ years of listening to music, I've heard my share of consumed players. This Michael Tarbox is twilight zone.

Then there was the whole other dimension to the night, everyone sitting on the bar's back patio, the nice arbor effects, and an old apartment building with its back wooden stairs dimly lit in the fading light, I'm telling you, it was right out of Tennessee Williams, the couple hanging out at their place on the 2nd story, little baby in her arms, him taking down the trash, the dim light, Tarbox growling, fuzzing, and me wasted with the totally impromptu blessing of the thing.