I was once a little…um, okay, terribly obsessed with iTunes. I got my first iPod in 2004 and became immediately entranced by Apple’s seeming infinite lists of music for sale. Over the years, I spent way too much time on iTunes and spent way too much money on music, some of which was great, and some of which was not. In 2011, for the sake of my sanity and my bank account, I went cold turkey. I suspended my iTunes activities and completely stopped visiting site. With the iTunes Diaries, I take a look back, highlighting the good, the bad, and the ugly in music that I just had to have in the moment.
I don’t have much business liking country music. Not that it’s some sort of clique that I’m not allowed to join (though sometimes it seems that way), but it’s not a genre I grew up with. However, it’s also not a genre to which I was never exposed. With the likes of Glen Campbell, Niel Diamond, Dolly Parton, and hell, even the Carpenters, country music cross-overs were big business when it came to adult contemporary radio in the 70s and 80s. See, cause that’s what was allowed in the car — our local easy listening station, along with classical and later, jazz. So I heard plenty of twang along with strains of bossa nova and soft synthesizers. The thought of actually getting into country music at any level is pretty daunting. Having lived for a time in the South, I had my brushes with recent country music and found it, um…not to my taste. What spoke to me more was classic stuff, Hank Williams, Patsy Cline, and such, but I never ventured much beyond just listening.
So of all the country songs in the known universe, how did Clint Black’s “Good Run of Bad Luck” end up with a coveted spot on my iPod? Maverick, that’s how.
Remember when Mel Gibson was just a fun, likeable actor? Remember when it seemed like Jodie Foster would never escape Hannibal Lecter? Remember when James Garner…um, well shoot, he’s just always been pretty great. Anyway, the team up these three in the 1994 movie Maverick was golden. Really! Okay, so the movie wasn’t a comedy award-winner, but it was certainly a fun if somewhat Disney-esque, popcorn-y romp through the Old West. My folks were big into western TV shows, so I watched my fair share. The Rifleman, Gunsmoke, Bonanza, etc…and Maverick, which focused on two gambling brothers, one of whom was played by James Garner. In the movie, Garner’s role was taken over by the charming Mel Gibson; Garner played a local sheriff, and Foster (of all people, right?) was the cute and believable love interest.
In addition to enjoying the movie, I also fell for the soundtrack. Black’s “Good Run of Bad Luck” played during one of my favorite scenes from the movie involving a goofy and overdrawn poker sequence that’s at the crux of Maverick’s wheelings and dealings. Without too much trouble, the song cemented itself in my subconscious. Some years later, after dusting off the ol’ memory banks to create an upbeat and eclectic iTunes playlist, Black’s smooth, catchy tune became a permanent fixture. The little diddy about gambling is mostly country but still poppy around the edges. Listening to it occasionally hardly makes me a fan of country, but it does bring me back to an easier time, before Mel Gibson went mad. Oh how the world has changed.
Also, the video reminds me that Clint Black was not hard on the eyes. Nope. Not at all unpleasant.