FROM WICKED TO WINSOME
THEY SING! THEY WRITE!
Remember when pop singers used to get physical and waste away in Margaritaville? These days, they’re writing cuddly kids’ books, high only on family values. A few then-and-now comparisons: Olivia Newton-John Song: ”Let me hear your body talk, body talk/Let me hear your body talk.” (”Physical,” 1981) Book: ”Protect our dear earth. Don’t throw it away/You, too, could make magic from garbage someday.” (A Pig Tale, 1993)
Livingston Taylor Song: ”Working at a bottle of Ripple wine/I’m breathing that clean fine Southern air.” (”Carolina Day,” 1971) Book: ”Chewing a shoe/Will help pass the time/The new ones taste best/I hope Dad won’t mind.” (Can I Be Good?, 1993)
Jimmy Buffett Song: ”Nothin’ to show but this brand-new tattoo/But it’s a real beauty, a Mexican cutie/How it got here I haven’t a clue.” (”Margaritaville,” 1977) Book: ”He sang and played his beautiful guitar, and he ruled Bananaland with wisdom.” (The Jolly Mon, 1988, reissued in paperback 1993)
Tom Paxton Song: ”There are thousands in the prisons/There are widows numbed with sorrow/There are graves unmarked and hidden/There are ghosts outside your gate.” (”White Bones of Allende,” 1977) Book: ”Where’s the baby?/She’s nearby/ Listening to a lullaby.” (Where’s the Baby?, 1993) -Anne Reeks