Monday, May 17, 2010

Feeling Good was Good Enough for Me

One of the coolest projects I've had the pleasure of working on (ever) was released last week: Please Don't Tell Me How The Story Ends: The Publishing Demos 1968–72 collects a whole bunch of the earliest, unreleased Kris Kristofferson tunes, including the first-ever recording of "Me and Bobby McGee."

A little background: When he began his career, Kristofferson had already been a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford and a decorated Airborne Ranger in the Army; he volunteered to go to Vietnam, but was instead assigned to teach English at West Point. Soon after, he picked up and headed south, landing a job as a janitor in the Columbia recording studio in Nashville, where Bob Dylan was recording Blonde On Blonde (Kristofferson didn't speak to him for fear of being fired). In the off-hours, he wrote and recorded a slew of pared-down, quiet demos, featured for the first time in this new collection. A 60-page booklet goes with it, and includes liner notes by Dennis Hopper, Merle Haggard, Kinky Friedman, and Michael Simmons, as well as a bunch of weird old passports and other documents and stuff that Kris and his wife Lisa sent up here to be scanned.

Of all the enjoyable things about working on this project, I think my favorite was when Lisa said "Kris will check over the lyrics when he's done mowing." I found that very relaxing and reassuring.

There have been some nice reviews over the past week since the record came out (The New York Times, NPR, Vice, etc.), which is cool because Light In The Attic has been putting this project together for SIX YEARS. If you purchase the CD – or even better, pre-order the vinyl – directly from them, they'll send you an autographed photo, until they run out (it's also available from just about any other record store). For more info, sound clips, etc., visit

1 comment:

Joey Veltkamp said...

WOW - this project sounds awesome Strath!