July 4, 2022, Lenox MA, by H. Ben Creadh – One year ago, James Taylor jilted his automatic audience, depriving them their annual Fourth of July fix. After the local health board reduced Tanglewood’s Covid-19 capacity from 15k to 9k, he called the whole sold-out thing off.
If there ever was a moment tailor-made for the soothing blandishments that his undemanding audience annually gloms onto, it was last year, 2021, 900 mass shootings ago. Instead, James Taylor made a place for himself in the Covid-19 Hall of Shame, near the greater miscreants, Eric Clapton and Van Morrison.
The sad truth of matters in the United States of America is that James Taylor commands a mindless mob exactly the same way Trump does. Just as Trump could’ve called off his mob on Jan. 6, without losing a fan, so too did JT last Fourth of July.
I may have been content to let it go, but In Taylor’s absence, the BSO filled the vacancy with an odious display of fake patriotism, sponsored by JT’s fellow Proper Bostonian, the carbetbagger Michael Bloomberg.
Yes, instead of TrueBlue old reliable Taylor, we got a marketing program sponsored by the pint-sized plutocrat, who, not long ago, spent 50 million dollars to elect the idiot Scott Brown to the seat in the U.S. Senate occupied by the people’s warrior, Elizabeth Warren.
It was so bad, so proto-fascist, that instead of the ancient 19th century artillery familiar to Tanglewood patrons, last year’s program included the deployment of an active duty field artillery battery, a mere fifty feet from the sacred space of the Koussevitsky Music Shed. So much for the safe haven of our idyllic Tanglewood – it’s one thing to monetize the arts, but a whole ‘nuther goddam thing to militarize them.
His fans are forgiving, however, because he always gives them what they want; Sweet Baby James, Steamroller, and Fire and Rain. Mob bosses straight across the spectrum, from political to musical, are in the thrall of the same ancient Muse: Ka-ching.
For an example of the proper way for recording artists to deal with a pandemic, see Bob Dylan’s Shadow Kingdom. Eighty-one years old, and still a million miles ahead of the copycats and phonies!
“The Gun Violence Archive, a nonprofit research group that tracks gun violence using police reports, news coverage and other public sources, defines a mass shooting as one in which at least four people were killed or injured. It counted more than 300 such shootings through early July. Of those shootings, 15 involved four or more fatalities, including one at a July 4 celebration in Highland Park, Ill., in which at least six people were killed.
The group recorded 692 mass shootings last year, with 28 involving four or more fatalities.”