Dear Ask a Deadhead #4 (Hillary or Bernie?)


Dear Ask a Deadhead,

Hillary or Bernie? — Mandy, Sugarbush, Vt

Mandy, you are not the first to ask me this question, but judging from your Facebook photos, you are the cutest. The thing about this question is, are you asking my advice? Or which candidate I’d vote for? Or whom I think is going to win?

A lot of Deadheads have short attention spans, but dudes and dudettes, finish the sentence.

Here’s my thinking: if the call comes at 3 a.m., I’m 100% confident Bernie will say, LEGALIZE IT! Hillary? I’m not sure.

That said, a certain greatest band in the history of the world covers a very excellent song by the famous calypsonian, King Radio, called “Man Smart (Women Smarter),” and I am a strong proponent of this song’s message.

It’s so obvious. My ex-wife Nancy, for instance, is way smarter than me. I’m not even married to her anymore, and yet I’m still giving her 2 grand every month, which is so unhigh, but also shows how smart she is.

There are all kinds of other reasons women are superior to men. Their clothes are more complicated. Their hair is more complicated. I ride a bicycle. They are on a lunar cycle. They read self-help books. We don’t read. The list is endless.

So, in this regard, I’m 100% for Hillary,

Which means I’m 1000% conflicted. I like ‘em both. So what does your friendly estimated prophet do?

I voted for one and  donated some money to the other. My conscious is clear.

Dear Ask a Deadhead,

I am experiencing tremendous anxiety about experiencing tremendous anxiety. It hasn’t happened yet, and yet it is happening. I just read this over, and now I’m worrying that you will think that this is a fake question that is really an exercise in circular logic. But it isn’t, I swear. I’m not even sure what circular logic is. Do you have any advice for me? — Lenny, Silver Springs, Maryland

Lenny, it’s all gonna be okay. Follow these steps:

  1. Put on some good tunes
  2. Google these words: “Mental health emergency Silver Springs”
  3. Call some of websites that come up
  4. Read them the letter you just wrote to me
  5. Follow their instructions
  6. Write me again soon, brother


Dear Ask a Deadhead,

The Stones, Pink Floyd, Rod Stewart and Queen all wrote kick ass disco songs. How come “Shakedown Street” doesn’t get any radio play, like “Miss You: and “Brick in the Wall?” —Shadow, Portland, Oregon and Portland, Maine

Shadow! Great to hear from you again!

This is an excellent question. It is also a painful question, because the answer hurts. “Shakedown” is a solid disco song. It has the beat. It has some funky minor seventh and ninth  guitar chords. It has some snazzy arranging.

What it doesn’t have is a vocal edge that gets it over. It’s a fact: great disco songs have great vocals. Captain Trips, was the greatest scale-runner in history, but he was way too laid back in the vocal department on this tune for it to be a hit. He was no match for Mick’s snarls or Rod’s rasp, never mind Donna Summer’s moans. I think producer Lowell George should have pushed Jerry harder and maybe brought in some backup muscle. But it’s too late now. The real point is it was never a big radio song when it came out, so it’s not getting on the radio now. Unless you take your trust fund and buy a radio station, dude.


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