Sky Saxon

(2009)

I see Sky Saxon died.

I remember my pal Ron E’s birthday party, a long time ago. I was playing drums behind my brother Jon (on sax) and a bassist. I remember Sky storming the stage and singing along to some tune we were doing. Later I was playing in a trio with Ron E. (on his big giant loud fast guitar). Sky, stoned, beyond stoned even and out of his mind high, suddenly rushing out from backstage and storming the stage again. He kinda shouted-screamed bellowed-wailed. Which means I actually had the (mis)fortune of playing with Sky Saxon in two different bands on the same night.

When he wasn’t sucking on pipes and joints, he was trying to talk chicks into getting it on with him. Young chicks and big chicks mostly. He liked ’em young and/or big around.  Rock stars, ya know. Old hippies. Lost visionaries. Fruitarians. God spelled backward is dog. Really.

Part of me is slightly envious. I mean I was never really a fan, never got the whole Sky cult thing, but what a lifestyle. No one keeps you from getting on somebody else’s stage. No one keeps you from rolling somebody else’s weed. No one stops you from hitting on somebody else’s wife.

I have a few more Sky Saxon stories, know of many more…who knows how many there are? I’ve had the hippest jazz critic I know regale me with Sky Saxon stories. I told him mine. He nodded, impressed. What to me was just a weird night was to him a bit of history.

Well, Sky’s dead now. Writers gushed in all the magazines, on the websites, even in the newspapers. Not because of “Pushin’ Too Hard”. But because he was Sky. Or is Sky, the myth. Musicians shake their heads and wonder. Dope dealers hide their stashes. Ladies tingle and blush.

I didn’t mention that I hung backstage with him that night between the stage stormings, smoking out with Sky, experiencing Sky, wondering how the fuck Sky ever got there. He’d smoke, talk batshit crazy, then leap up and chase down some poor chick. She’d say no and turn red, not sure if it was a compliment or not. Most of them said no. Most of them. He was Sky after all.

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