No Depression 

Some of the finest music writing around is found in the pages of No Depression, the "alt-country" bible. Some of our finest local scribes have appeared there, and it's helped define (and promote) a musical genre without quite pigeon-holing it: Beck, Lucinda Williams, White Stripes, Dixie Chicks, Ralph Stanley, Frank Black, Dolly Parton, Janis Joplin, Merle Haggard...all are fair game.

Next time you see Armando Benitez, ask him if he's a suscriber. According to Rich Draper's latest notebook, Benitez is a huge country music fan (although not as huge as last year).

Benitez's favorite country star is Kenny Chesney, a.k.a. Mr. Renee Zellwegger for about seven minutes, which makes it less likely 'Mando is a No Depression reader. Chesney has never appeared in the magazine, according to its search engine. But you know how search engines can be.

It's also safe to assume Rich Draper's writing -- one of my favorite petty obsessions -- has never made it into No Depression. But with lines like this, he may be able to write a song or two for Kenny Chesney: "There's real-life dramas unfolding in traditional country music, the often sad whine of steel guitars telling of loves lost and Grandpa getting drunk on whiskey."

It's possible that Rich's editor missed the fact that "dramas" should take a plural verb, but it's also possible that Rich wrote "there's real-life dramas" on purpose to give his sentence, you know, that ol' country feeling. Ah, yeah. It's also possible that Rich doesn't have an editor and just posts whatever he feels like to the Giants' Web site.

Whatever the case, it's the first official entry for this year's Draper Follies. Keep your eyes tuned and your metaphors mixed for more gems. You never know when Noah Lowry's body is going to whisper in his ear.


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