Tuesday, January 29, 2008

pattie boyd


A friend lent me a book to read: the new Wonderful Tonight by Pattie Boyd. I am almost done and it was an enjoyable read for the most part. Like being able to go back in time - and who wouldn't want to go to London in the 1960s and hang out with the Beatles? - Just to read about the optimism is almost like a drug. Mind, by the 80s, things get kind of messy....

There was a bit of gender-sparring about it in the NY Times Book Review. The first review was by a man who said who cares about this groupie, basically. Not an important story in rock n roll, blah blah. Who really cares about "the Muse?"

- Then a woman wrote a review, telling us how what the world needs now is another blow by blow account of various chord progressions developed by the boys in the middle of the night - and how, gee, she's just the woman who inspired Something and Layla and Wonderful Tonight and maybe more rock love songs than any other single person. That's all. She wouldn't have a story to tell now, would she?

As I bounded along, I did wonder how someone could leave a Beatle for anyone else. It’s got to be on a few minds. And could that alone be the reason she waited all these years to write it, for said Beatle has now passed on?

- Because just like so many of the hip and elevated before him, he was kind of a sexist creep to her. It broke my heart to read it, because I loved him, even collaged him - yet why wouldn’t it be true?

She was the Beatle Wife who made money, had a career, had her own thing, more so than any of the others (till Yoko came along). She was on the cover of magazines and books.

Of course she doesn’t really write it that way, all “Look what I did.” Some would say she’s got too much class for that. But others might say she doesn’t have the confidence or training to blow her own horn.

Mr. Spiritual didn’t want her working, wanted her home cooking (or something like that), and he cats around like crazy otherwise. So when God (otherwise known as Eric Clapton) comes knocking, she’s like, well, Hello.

Speaking of the Muse, I see that Lee Miller has a big show in Philadelphia right now. That would be something to see. She was painted at the muse forever, someone who just happened to be there for the moment of Solarization. She just happened to be there for a lot of things. Well, she’s slowly acquiring a much bigger and better place in the history of art than that.


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