I question bringing this up, but I keep thinking about it.
Sometimes when I meet a celebrity or a hotshot I experience this confusing mix of awe and compassion and sameness and frustration and pride and envy.
Going to hear Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger (Sean Lennon & Charlotte Kemp Muhl’s project) I was interested in seeing how he was and how their new materiel translated to a live situation. I wanted to see some of my friends and meet a few more there at the sanctuary, which I think of as a second…well, third home. I expected the music to be decent and thought that meeting Sean might be cool.
The show was really great. Sean’s singing and playing are smooth and sweet and the songwriting is interesting and thoughtful. Conspicuously artful and literary and not-self indulgent in the least. Charlotte sang beautifully with him and played accordion, melodica, banjo, guitar, bass, recorder and a load of percussion. I'd kill for such accompaniment. Really nice, quirky instrumentation. Funny, cute banter. Couldn’t have been better sound, mixed by Peter Morrison, and the scene there in the farmhouse yard was perfect. I loved the show.
But that’s not why I’m writing.
Leaving Woodstock and thinking back on the evening and on talking with Sean Lennon, I felt a lot. Gratitude. Sorrow. Awe. Sure....he’s “just a guy” and is just like anyone and it isn’t like he’s John Lennon or a Beatle. He’s finding his way and struggling with thoughts and growing older just like anyone.
But I found myself deeply affected and realized that this guy lived early through tragedy and there are no bigger shoes to fill…how could his own art ever catch an objective break?
And this John & Yoko's baby. Ally & I were processing in the car and both feeling it though we couldn’t really get the words out. We fought tears.
He’s “darling, Sean”.
He is the “Beautiful Boy” immortalized by his father, arguably modern history’s most prolific and relevant heros. This ordinary, tragic, smart, fortunate, happy, talented, exceptional boy is more royal than royalty.
I have so much to write about John & the day he died & his significance to me, but this is about someone else. I’m so glad I went to that show.
And he’s good.