Highlights: More Decade Nostalgia

I went to a book party in New York tonight for a new release called Fire and Rain: The Beatles, Simon and Garfunkel, James Taylor, CSNY, and the Lost Story of 1970. I’m a big fan of all those sixties-culture nostalgia-based journalistic recountings (Tom Brokaw’s Boom! serving as the most apposite example). I used to think, as we all do every now and then, that I was “meant” to live in a different decade, Owen-Wilson-in-Midnight-in-Paris-style. But instead of the Parisian expats of the Roaring Twenties, my heart was with the once-apathetic 1960s masses inspired to action not just by the folly of Vietnam and racial segregation but by politicians like Bobby Kennedy and George McGovern that refused to dumb down their rhetoric and believed that America could be great again. (I know, I sound like I stepped off the pages of Stuff White People Like.) Anyway, while I’m not quite as attached to the seventies, I’m intrigued by the possibility that the decade’s zeitgeist can be accurately captured by its music, and am determined to get around to reading Fire and Rain. Also, while James Taylor is no Billy Joel in my personal musical pantheon, “Fire and Rain” is possibly the best song ever recorded. Just saying.

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