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Everyone's a Critic

The Observer's culture blog

Monday, March 19, 2012

TALKING ABOUT MY GENERATION, by James Leonard

I was standing around the third floor of City Hall, staring out the window, waiting for an interview with Mayor Hieftje when I heard two familiar voices behind me talking about rock music from the 70s, and playing records on a turntable.

I turned around and there were police chief Barnett Jones and city attorney Stephen Postema, walking out of Postema's office and talking about Billy Joel and Japanese pressings and half-speed masters. When Postema told Jones I used to be in the record business, the chief became even more loquacious.

By the time Hieftje got off the elevator and walked over, Jones was in full flow. He was talking about how his 13-year-old wanted to see his collection and how he went downstairs and showed him some of his favorite records by his favorite bands - like the Doobie Brothers.

"But, dude!" I said. "Did he ask you what their name meant?"

"Sure," the chief replied. "I told him when I pulled it out. A doobie is a name for a marijuana cigarette - but they made some great music!"


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