How to Kill a Rock Star by Tiffanie DeBartolo Read Online (FREE)
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Save the Savior
My oldest memory isn’t one I see when I think back on the past, it’s one I hear. I’m four years old, on my way home from a camping trip with my family. My eyes are shut tightly and I’m trying to sleep in the backseat of the car. My six-year-old brother, who is already asleep, keeps kicking me in the head, and I am about to kick him back when the song on the radio gets my attention. The smooth voice of a man is singing about a pony that ran away in the snow and died.
Or maybe it was the girl chasing after the pony who died.
Maybe nobody died. The girl and the pony might have just wanted to get off the farm. I was never real y sure. Al I remember is that before I knew it, I was sobbing so hard my dad had to stop the car so my mom could pul me into her lap and calm me down.
The song was senseless and sappy, but it made me feel something. And although I couldn’t articulate it at that age, feeling something—anything— made me conscious that I was alive.
I would spend the rest of my childhood sitting beside radios, continual y being transformed and exalted by a melody, a lyric, or a riff.
I would spend most of my adolescence in pieces on the floor, only to be picked up and put back together by the voice of one of my heroes.
It sounds sil y, I know. But for me, the power of music rests in its ability to reach inside and touch the places where the deepest cuts lie.
Like a benevolent god, a good song wil never let you down.
And sometimes, when you’re trying to find your way, one of those gods actual y shows up and gives you directions.
Doug Blackman even walked like a god. I was standing near the elevator when I saw him enter the hotel. His arms moved back and forth as if set to a metronome, his torso stood erect and intimidating, and his eyes seemed a step ahead of his body, unblinking, taking in everything his peripheral vision had to offer.
He stopped at the front desk to drop off an envelope, and seconds later he was standing beside me, fishing through his breast pocket. He smel ed like red wine and cigarettes, and his dark hair had wiry gray threads sewn al through it.
I told myself to stay cool. Don’t stare. Act like the adult I was. But I had imagined Doug coming in with an entourage, had thought I’d have to fight just to catch a glimpse. And then he was beside me, our shoulders inches from touching—the radio prophet who had taught me almost everything I knew about life and love, politics and poetry, and was, in my opinion, the greatest singer/songwriter in the history of rock ’n’ rol .