“To be a musician’s musician is the biggest achievement that I could

Such is the case of J.J. Cale. I must admit my prejudice going into this thing; I have not been on the Internet for almost two years. I would have never believed I’d be telling a social media audience that I got to shake Dylan bassist Tony Garnier’s hand.

Garnier was heading into Midtown Plaza in my hometown of Saskatoon. I was waiting at the same plaza for a friend to pick me up; we were late getting to a Roughriders game. Our meeting didn’t cause an earthquake, but I did tell Garnier that I came all the way from Whitehorse, in “the Yukon”.

He was surprised that anybody would recognize him in this “remote” part of Canada.

I thanked him, as I do any musician who had a major influence on the way I look at the world. I told him I liked his work with Dylan, and that his bass on Tom Waits’ “Clap Hands” was wonderful.

The scenario wasn’t new to me; I have shaken the hands of many powerful forces. Long John Baldry and Ramblin’ Jack Elliot come to mind.

These are the musicians who inspired me, this absurdist songwriter, to try out for the amateur squad.

So let us harken back to the main point. A couple of months ago a friend of mine told me that J.J. Cale had recently died, and Eric Clapton was doing a tribute LP to him.

When any big celebrity takes a trip to the ‘ladies room’ we hear about it until we’re sick. How could it be that there was no mention of J.J. Cale’s passing? There is only so much tolerance one can muster before one must lash out and say, “Did you know ‘After Midnight’ and ‘Cocaine’ aren’t Eric Clapton songs? They’re J.J. Cale.”

“Well, who is this J.J. Cale? I’ve never heard of him.”

We all know his songs, but other people are singing them — his songs made other musicians famous. Why are a certain class of musicians designated to have a cult following — Dylan, for instance — while his neighbour is Jazzy J.

J.J. Cale was a man who respected his privacy; all of the fame could go to other people. Like many great studio musicians who have been forgotten, so have many song creators have been cast under the same cloak of obscurity.

Though now that Cale is gone, we should now, more than ever, listen to his songs like “Magnolia”.

Find what makes a lasting impression long after your death and you shall be fulfilled.

You’re the best I’ve ever had.”

I sure hope he’s up there trading guitar lessons with Woody Guthrie, and teaching Walt Whitman his stylistic approach.

After all what is life but, “one step forward and two steps back?” ever aspire to be.”

– Ryan Dorward

Such is the case of J.J. Cale. I must admit my prejudice going into this thing; I have not been on the Internet for almost two years. I would have never believed I’d be telling a social media audience that I got to shake Dylan bassist Tony Garnier’s hand.

Garnier was heading into Midtown Plaza in my hometown of Saskatoon. I was waiting at the same plaza for a friend to pick me up; we were late getting to a Roughriders game. Our meeting didn’t cause an earthquake, but I did tell Garnier that I came all the way from Whitehorse, in “the Yukon”.

He was surprised that anybody would recognize him in this “remote” part of Canada.

I thanked him, as I do any musician who had a major influence on the way I look at the world. I told him I liked his work with Dylan, and that his bass on Tom Waits’ “Clap Hands” was wonderful.

The scenario wasn’t new to me; I have shaken the hands of many powerful forces. Long John Baldry and Ramblin’ Jack Elliot come to mind.

These are the musicians who inspired me, this absurdist songwriter, to try out for the amateur squad.

So let us harken back to the main point. A couple of months ago a friend of mine told me that J.J. Cale had recently died, and Eric Clapton was doing a tribute LP to him.

When any big celebrity takes a trip to the ‘ladies room’ we hear about it until we’re sick. How could it be that there was no mention of J.J. Cale’s passing? There is only so much tolerance one can muster before one must lash out and say, “Did you know ‘After Midnight’ and ‘Cocaine’ aren’t Eric Clapton songs? They’re J.J. Cale.”

“Well, who is this J.J. Cale? I’ve never heard of him.”

We all know his songs, but other people are singing them — his songs made other musicians famous. Why are a certain class of musicians designated to have a cult following — Dylan, for instance — while his neighbour is Jazzy J.

J.J. Cale was a man who respected his privacy; all of the fame could go to other people. Like many great studio musicians who have been forgotten, so have many song creators have been cast under the same cloak of obscurity.

Though now that Cale is gone, we should now, more than ever, listen to his songs like “Magnolia”.

Find what makes a lasting impression long after your death and you shall be fulfilled.

You’re the best I’ve ever had.”

I sure hope he’s up there trading guitar lessons with Woody Guthrie, and teaching Walt Whitman his stylistic approach.

After all what is life but, “one step forward and two steps back?”