Nashville, TN: Chicken Corner had a little fun this past week visiting family and helping promote her husband's biography of James Brown. One delightful discovery came on Sunday as we strolled through the Country Music Hall of Fame's permanent exhibits on our way to a special show about the Bakersfield, Cali, scene. There, just a few feet from Elvis' diamond-dust Cadillac was Cindy Walker's typewriter (above) -- the one on which she typed the lyrics for "You Don't Know Me" (a longtime favorite of Chicken Corner), "Bubbles in My Beer," and "Miss Molly," among so many others. Her songs have been recorded by everyone except Guns n Roses.
A writer named Bill DeMain puts it nicely in describing Walker as belonging to the "three chords and the truth" school of songwriting. He writes about Walker in "Performing Songwriter," which I came across this morning.
The best tunes are songs with a face. You recognize them. You know them. It's like a person. They have a face that's outstanding. Other songs don't have a face. You just hear them, that's all. The really good ones are few and far between.
Chicken Corner can only wish she could have asked Walker (who died in 2006) about that typewriter. I love the idea of this particular typewriter as a musical instrument.