I vote for "The paths of glory lead but to the grave."
Kenneth Tynan was one of those brave people who, when they get bored, stop and move on.
Time magazine once interviewed Sting when he was at the top of his singing career as a singer and bass player in The Police. He was standing on his head (the show-off) during his interview, and he said, "Right now, I love what I am doing. When I get bored, I'll quit."
Beverly Sills, the coloratura opera singer, suddenly quit singing at--what? 52? She said she even quit singing in the shower. And she became head of an opera company.
Tynan had a careless, buccaneering attitude to life. Right now I find that very attractive.
"A buccaneering attitude to life": what I would give for that!
Do you have to have talent to be so devil-may-care? Or does the devil-may-care attitude produce the talent?
It's a lucky combination--they can co-exist independently.
And the moral is.....
Don't get uppity?
Talent is not enough?
The paths of glory lead but to the grave?
now matter how you struggle and strive
you'll never get out of this world alive -
Hank Williams (Senior)
So why not take a few risks?
I've been thinking, it's the risk takers we remember. People like Ken Tynan and Hank Williams Snr.
When I was growing up, my family had a hi-fi and Mom had 78 records of Hank Sr. I'm not sure if it was familiarity or what, but I know a LOT of Hank Sr. songs inside out, I could probably sing them in my sleep.
He DID take risks. He led a very sad life, and died at not quite 30. He had six times the talent and class that his son ever had. There have been all kinds of plays about him, most of them not portraying him in a very flattering light.
Who was it that said they'd rather fail at something than miss the chance at trying?
I don't know the origin of that quote, but I know others to the same effect.
"Ah but a man's reach should exceed his grasp,
Or what's a heaven for."
Tynan wasn't a "nice" man either, but wotthehell!
Isn't it amazing what idols people turn into when they die? (Tragically or not). Hank was kicked out of the Grand Ol' Opry, at that time the absolute epitome of a country music performer's career. Yes, indeed, he had alcohol and drug problems. And women problems, it seems. He was never allowed to come back to Ryman Auditorium.
But whose name is it constantly mentioned now? Hank Williams Sr changed music in his way surely as much as the Beatles changed music in their way.
The Opry has to contend with what they did to 'a star' and NOW, boy howdy, Hank Sr. is a HERO, a GROUNDBREAKER...etc. etc. etc.
I'd reckon that maybe 50 years down the road, Tynan may be remembered as a hero and a groundbreaker, as well. And all those who dissed him will blessedly get amnesia and not remember the nasty things he said, or they said about him....
Just like all the people who had bad things to say about John Lennon suddenly forgot them...
I didn't know about Hank Snr being kicked out of the Grand Ol' Opry.
There are lots of similar stories.
For instance, Byron was all but thrown out of England.
And most of the places which now trade on their connection with Van Gogh were all too happy to see the back of him when he was alive.
Granted, he was a no show a couple of times, and showed up very drunk a couple times. And I'm not saying they were wrong. But after he died, suddenly he's a hero, a saint...
And by the same token Van Gogh was the sort of person you'd cross the street to avoid- an ugly drunk and abusive to women.
Kenneth Tynan...I remember he said about Garbo:
What when drunk, one sees in other women, one sees in Garbo sober
Yes, he was a great one for those kind of epigrams.
He a friend of Louise Brooks and wrote a book about her.