Happy Birthday Friedrich Nietzsche

nietzscheHere at Steel Guitar Insanity we’re pretty excited about Friedrich Nietzsche’s birthday coming up Saturday. He was born in 1844, which would make him, um, really old, and he went insane, too. He had some interest in music and was a big fan of Richard Wagner. He did opium and wrote some real deep – incomprehensible, some might say – shit that was suppressed for a long time because of supposed ties with the Nazis. So we’re gonna drink some Doppelbock and eat some German Chocolate cake, or something like that. Below are some excerpts from his writings, with some frivolous addenda, imagining him to be a steel guitar player.

“In heaven, all the interesting people are missing.”
Buddy’s not there. What about Day and Chalker?

“The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.”
Maybe he was thinking about Uni players.

“When you stare into the abyss the abyss stares back at you.”
And don’t blink. You can be the Overman.

“I would believe only in a God that knows how to dance.”
Surely not a line dance.

“To predict the behavior of ordinary people in advance, you only have to assume that they will always try to escape a disagreeable situation with the smallest possible expenditure of intelligence.”
So, when you’re stuck with an overbearing fiddle player sitting in, just call “Steelin’ the Blues”, in C#.

“Talking much about oneself can also be a means to conceal oneself.”
Buddy’s pretty closed lipped most of the time. “Really?’ he says when he feels loquacious.

“Be careful when you fight the monsters, lest you become one.”
Well, Buddy and Jimmy used to lock horns quite a bit. And they both turned into monsters.

“A casual stroll through the lunatic asylum shows that faith does not prove anything.”
Yeah, take a stroll down Music Row.

“Insanity in individuals is something rare – but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule.”
Could he have imagined what the CMA has become?

“Art is the proper task of life. ”
There ya go, until you start getting a few session accounts, then art falls by the wayside.

“All things are subject to interpretation. Whichever interpretation prevails at a given time is a function of power and not truth.”
Like some singers who want to tell the band how to play. I’ve seen them move a mike stand 6 inches just to assert their power.

“The thought of suicide is a great consolation: by means of it one gets through many a dark night.”
Or many a dark road trip.

“Only sick music makes money today.”
No kidding?

“Without music, life would be a mistake.”
There you have it, from one of history’s preeminent philosophers.

Author: Cal Sharp

Nashville pedal steel guitarist for over 30 years. Credits include Stonewall Jackson, Little Jimmy Dickens, Red Sovine, Faron Young, Ernest Tubb, Ray Price, Johnny Russell, George Fox, Vern Gosdin, Del Reeves, Gilley's, the Palomino Club and a few others. Retired from the road, playing sessions and clubs locally. I also develop websites, like this one and other music-related sites. Contact me if you need a website. Email: cal at caligraphics dot net or fill out the contact form. http://www.caligraphicsdesign.com/contact/

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