Nine Things I Would Do In Rock and Roll Heaven
Like most American children, I was indoctrinated into the Christian tribe. In case you somehow aren't familiar with the mythology, one of the main ideas is that if you do what the book says, you'll go to a place called heaven.
Now, the book doesn't lay it out very clearly, so my God-fearing mother couldn't explain exactly what this heaven joint was like, except to say that I'd be able to do whatever I want there. Seemed like a cool idea.
So sometimes I'd imagine what I'd do if I got to this wonderful place. See the Dinosaurs. Meet the Vikings (Fran Tarkenton, not Hagar the Horrible). Live in the tree house from Swiss Family Robinson. That sort of stuff.
I'm tribe-free these days, but I still like to imagine what I might do if there really is a place called heaven. I'd still see the dinosaurs in the treehouse with Fran, but as you can imagine, I've added some wishes to the list. Rock and roll wishes.
You're Just Like the Geek in High Fidelity
Yes, I realize a list of rock and roll pipe dreams seems similar to the list John Cusack's character made in High Fidelity.
Where do you think I got the idea? (OK, the initial idea. The more recent impetus was the Backstreet Boys' surprise appearance in the motion picture hilarity This Is the End.)
Anyway, I always loved the High Fidelity scene--partially because it reminded me how lucky I was to have my own record store, but mainly because it made me think back to my imaginative childhood thoughts on heaven....
... and how I'd build my own list of rock and roll fantasies.
I'm Not the Same Geek, So It's Not The Same Type of List
The difference between Cusack's list and mine is that Cusack's list is about dream jobs. My dreams are a little more kicked back.
Don't get me wrong, I'm willing to do a little work in my heavenly scenarios, but only if it's necessary to be in the thick of the moment.
You see, I don't want to be any of the famous musicians on this list - because in this set of pipe dreams I'm in observe-the-hero mode (plus that seems a little too Being John Malkovich for me.) However, I do want to be involved in the scene. If my plausible involvement means I have to do some work, so be it.
Hmmm, where would I inject myself into the history of rock and roll?
9 Things I'd Do in Rock and Roll Heaven
In my world of rock and roll, everything starts with the Beatles, and so shall my dreams.
I'm willing to give the Beatles a full third of my nine wishes, because to me they are that important, and that interesting.
1. Interview The Beatles and write a story about their aspirations during their final run at the Cavern Club.
I'd do the interview thing early in their career, because it would be great to see the Fab Four as-yet-unaffected by massive fame. It would also be great to see how hard they worked, and hear them play in such an intimate, drunken environment.
2. Take pictures throughout the Beatles Rubber Soul sessions
The photographer in me would have to take pictures at some point, and Rubber Soul seems like a great mid-point to do it. It's one of my favorite albums, and it's a crossroads for the Beatles in terms of drug exploration, fashion, etc. Being an all-access photographer would be about as close as you could get to the action without being one of the famous people.
Note: Neither writing nor photography seem like work to me. In fact, I can't believe I am getting paid to write stuff like this.
3. Catch a buzz and talk philosophy with the Beatles throughout the Abbey Road sessions
Notice I use the preposition 'throughout'? I'm no dummy. I don't want to just see a day or two of the sessions that produced the greatest album ever made, I want to see it all. During that time, the newfound philosopher in me (see the earlier "no tribe" reference) would like to sit down and see what the Beatles, especially John and George, thought about the spiritual side of life. (I'd make more of it than Dewey Cox did.)