By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Eric Nicholson
Swaney's legendary area-development meeting was no ground-shaking episode in anyone's life; it was just another day. Jeff stated his vision and asked for support in this concept from other area luminaries. As we left that non-epic event, it was clearly understood amongst all of us that this was just Jeff being Jeff. There's nothing wrong with that, no matter what spin you choose to put on it; it's just his way. Had any of you been there, it would have been obvious that the future of the area was destined to change.
In my opinion, Swaney has always been up-front and straightforward about his idealist mission, whether you agree with it or not. Had he not taken charge with his vision then, some other less scrupulous, greedy piece of shit would have and truly sold out the hood. As far as wasting ink is concerned, Hobbs still mouths off from time to time, and you people still print it. He is as responsible for what the area became in its "fun" aspect as the aforementioned others. Then again, he is much more accountable than the rest of us for the way things are now, because he left the area when he still had a voice of influence.
Hobbs gave up his status and say of how things were to be the day he bailed and burned the scene. As he's stated in the past, God forgives him, but that doesn't mean we have to, does it? You would think by now he'd know where the door is.
Deep Blue somewhere?
Every time I watch my wedding video from my first marriage -- which the lead members of Deep Blue Something crashed -- I sigh, grab a tissue, and wonder what happened to these favorite whipping boys of the Dallas Observer. Do they ever play locally anymore? Did their glamour-shot layout in Playgirl have anything to do with their disappearance from the Dallas music scene? Will they ever pair up with the ever-resilient boys (and I use that term loosely) of Duran Duran again? Please give us an update.
Editor's note: For more about Deep Blue Something, please see this week's Street Beat.
Back in the U.S.S.R.
My name is Rob, and I'm a Peace Corps volunteer in Russia. I realize that this is just one article you wrote a few years ago, but I just read it today on your Web site (www.dallasobserver.com). I just read your article slamming bands like Whiskeytown and Uncle Tupelo as "kids playing Cowboys and Indians during summer break." That's absurd, and here's why: At the end of the day, it doesn't matter who's playing it or how old they are or who they are influenced by; what matters is whether they are playing what is in their hearts and how the listener is affected. I like Gram Parsons, and so do a lot of people, including, as you mentioned, the guys in Whiskeytown.
I have a feeling you are in your late 30s. Maybe I'm wrong, but I think you are looking at music from the wrong angle. You hold some band (in this case, Parsons and presumably the Flying Burrito Brothers) as the stick by which to measure any band that might be compared to them. In your mind, you have already decided that no band can come close to them or, God forbid, be better ("Taken as a whole, Sweetheart of the Rodeo and Gilded Palace of Sin are the beginning and the end of country-rock"). This way of thinking is very negative and rooted in some strange holier-than-thou attitude. Do you see what I mean? I've been there before, but I got out of that dead end.
Somewhere in Russia
You can't handle the truth
In reference to attorney Warren L. Clark's letter in the December 9 issue of the Dallas Observer, I'm so sick and tired of hearing that judges and lawyers alike suppress evidence. If it's crucial to the case -- in this instance, the case of Dustin Camp -- let it be heard. I don't think it's fair not to. But, hey, our justice system isn't fair anyway. Murderers get out in eight to 10 years, drug dealers get life, and people who are at the wrong place and time witnessing a killing are sentenced as severely as the actual perpetrator.
But this guy Dustin getting 10 years probation is absolutely ludicrous. Where is his accountability? He gets off scot-free. Self-defense, my ass. How can a stick compete with a 2,000-pound car? He's a murderer, plain and simple. Our laws sure need changing -- and not 100 years from now.
Don't forget to flush
Since I am an associate of J.C. Penney ("Penny pinched," November 25), I found the article very interesting. So thank you again for the eye-opener. There are a lot of cutbacks going on now. We don't learn these things through the company, and it sounds like it is going to take a very big roll of bathroom tissue to clean up things at the top.