Sunday, October 7, 2007

Nobody For President!

A month and a few days ago, Oceanshaman, who's so often putting up inspirational post after inspirational post, with some youtube music videos sprinkled in for added delicious flavoring, offered up for folks a Shel Silverstein poem in the form of a video from Wavy Gravy. Now, I personally don't care for videos posted with people's writings, which partially has to do with my continuing use of good old-fashioned dial-up internet that doesn't allow me to easily view such vids... but still I was intrigued. Is there possibly a CD out there, I wondered. Maybe? After just a bit of digging I found what I hadn't even known existed. Within a week or two it was in my hands. Having personal possessions is something I try not to enjoy, for the most part... but I must say, I'm diggin' havin' this in my humble collection of discs to spin. So for that post, my friend, Thanks!

On with the music, huh?!

Wavy Gravy

Old Feathers - New Bird
(the 80's are the 60's twenty years later)


The Green Acid At Woodstock
The United States of Chicago
Nobody For President
Livermore or Less / The Mutant Bunny For Peace
Bubbles For Buddha
Harpo's Ladder
How Hugh Romney Became Wavy Gravy
____And A Tiny Tip of Texas Went To Heaven
Basic Human Needs
The Perfect High

Not all music is something I didn't know prior to ordering this. I seriously had no clue what to expect. The first track, and most that follow, is Wavy talking to a crowd about times of his life. He's clearly giving a slideshow while telling funny stories -- anecdote after anecdote. Well, there aren't actually that many of them but what is here is pure gold! This is some fun stuff. Seinfeld? Chris Rock? Sure, they're funny, but who needs 'em when you've got Wavy!

Three tracks are songs. Harpo's Ladder is an ode to one of Wavy comedic heroes, the great Harpo Marx. Really it's more of a chant with some comedy thrown in for good measure. His love for making people laugh and smile shines so brightly.

Basic Human Needs is beautiful
and again also essentially just a chant with his back-up singers, The Wavettes. Another light shines on this one and that light is the bright shining goodness that is Wavy's deeply intense love for helping people. If there's one person who really could be a legitimate angel within the counterculture hippie community, Wavy is it.

The third song is the last track and it's Shel Silverstein's poem, The Perfect High, put into music, a nice and long bluesy number with just acoustic guitar. And in his own Wavy way, there are moments he adds to let out a nice little laugh.

In my opinion, this is priceless material. And it has inspired me. I'm gonna put into motion an idea I had, to regularly promote some charities on here, more than just a link, but a bunch more... and I'm a gonna start with Wavy's Seva Foundation as well as Camp Winnarainbow which not only teaches kids and adults how to be clowns, but also does so for inner city, underprivileged kids. Why does an inner city kid need to know about being a clown? I'm sure there's a lot more to the camps than big shoes and squirting flowers!

And if Wavy himself was to hypothetically ever read this, or if I met him for a handshake and had enough time for two words, I'd say: Thank You!

From inside the front cover:

He is Hugh Romney who underwent an acid meltdown that transformed him into Wavy Gravy. He is a Merry Prankster. He is a Hog Farmer. He is a Yuppie Conspirator. He is a clown who when he takes off his makeup still looks exactly like a clown.

Wavy Gravy is the director of Camp Winnarainbow and addresses the kids, "Hi Boss." His commune catered the Woodstock festival a couple of decades ago. They also provided security by means of cream pies and seltzer bottles. Wavy asked for a Smokey the Bear costume and warned people to be careful with fires. Those who were tripping really thought he was Smokey the Bear.

Wavy loves costumes. The cops couldn't arrest him in a Santa Claus costume -- that would have been poor public relations -- but they did arrest him wearing a bunny costume. Wavy Gravy is the only person in the entire world who carries a "Get Out of Jail Free" card -- laminated, yet -- and has actually tried to use it.

I once saw Wavy encounter an old acquaintance who had just gotten out of jail and was seething with suppressed rage. Wavy mirrored his angry body image, and the released prisoner allowed himself to get into rhythm until his hostility was turned into a soothing game.

Wavy Gravy is the Danny Kaye of the counter-culture. He has organized several Cowboys for Indians benefits concerts. He is the court jester of Seva, an international organization whose services range from providing operations that cure blindness in India and Nepal, to delivering sheep and goats to widows in the highlands of Guatemala.

Emmett Grogan of the Haight-Ashbury Diggers once said two magic words to Wavy: "Wanna help?" There was no way he could say no. Years later, at a Nobody for President rally in New Hampshire, Baba Ram Dass asked, "How can I help?" Ram Dass started out selling Nobody Buttons and is now Nobody's Guru Board of Directors.

Wavy gravy is a totally political animal, even while -- no, especially while -- he acts out and shares the perverted Disneyland that inhabits his psyche. Wavy goes all the way with his life, and the result is living proof that responsibility can be fun.

Indeed, he founded the First Church of Fun. It is celebrated every April 1st. And the password to participate in the ceremony? "I forget."

Idealism is the only survival tactic for Wavy. He has always been on the front lines of cultural renaissance -- the one that exploded from the blandness and repression of the Eisenhower years, and the one that is now exploding from the blandness and repression of the Reagan years.

Wavy has led a few "Nobody for President" campaigns. He is nobody's Fool. he is a true friend. He is a holy nut. He is a psychedelic relic. He is a jazz poet. He is an oral combat historian. Enjoy his audio slide show. Come meet Wavy Gravy -- the illegitimate son of Harpo Marx and Mother Teresa -- conceived one starrry night on a spiritual whoopie cushion.

--Paul Krassner
__Editor, The Realist


Anonymous said...

Thanks a lot for the Wavy!
God bless him and the few spirits like him, Country Joe, Jerry -- wait a minute, it's really hard to think of any like him - nearly everybody's a sellout .. what are you gonna do.

yankeegal said...

I have had Wavy's album for over 30 years. He is my guru, he keeps me sane. God bless him--"Show Up" is my mantra. I hope he lives forever!

Zoooma‼ said...

Hey, right on! It's been awhile since I've listened to that Wavy album, I just might hafta go grab it and give it a spin!

Thanks for commenting!!

one says one number and the other another
but they were set at the same time. Hmmm...

Calvin and Hobbes in the snow -- animated