This caught my attention today. I’m having a retro day and listening to The Travelling Wilburys, and I happened to look at the sleeve notes..
The Wilburys are: Lucky Wilbury, Otis Wilbury, Charlie T. Wilbury, Lefty Wilbury, Nelson Wilbury – although we may know them better as Bob Dylan, Jeff Lynne (ELO), Tom Petty, Roy Orbison and George Harrison. The album ‘Volume 1’ is brilliant, and should be in everyone’s collection. (Arguments accepted, but be prepared to be shot down :)
But the sleeve liner notes which caught my eye are as follows:
“The original Wilburys were a stationary people who, realising that their civilisation could not stand still forever, began to go for short walks – not the ‘travelling’ as we know it, but certainly as far as the corner and back. They must have taken to motion, in much the same way as penguins were at that time taking to ledges, for the next time we hear of they they were going out for the day (often taking lunch or a picnic). Later – we don’t yet know how much later – some intrepid Wilburys began to go away for the weekend, leaving late Friday and coming back Sunday. It was they who evolved simple rhythmic forms to describe their adventures.
A remarkable sophisticated musical culture developed, considering there were no managers or agents, and the further the Wilburys travelled the more adventurous their music became, and the more it was revered by the elders of the tribe who believed it had the power to stave off madness, turn brunettes into blondes and increase the size of their ears.
As the Wilburys began to go further and further in their search for musical inspiration they found themselves the object of interest among many less developed species – nightclub owners, tour operators and recording executives. To the Wilburys, whoc had only just learnt to cope with wives, roadies and drummers, it was a blow from which many of them never recovered.
A tiny handful survived – the last of The Travelling Wilburys – and the songs gathered here represent the popular laments, the epic and heroic tales which characterise the apotheosis of the elusive Wilbury sound. The message of the music travels, as indeed they travelled, and as I myself must now travel for further treatment. Good listening, good night and let thy Wilbury be done…”
Sleeve Note © Hugh Jampton, E.F. Norti-Bitz Reader in Applied Jacket, University of Krakatoa (East of Java)
Love the bit about the penguins ;) Remember, Tweeter and the Monkey Man will come looking for you if you refute any of the above! ;)