David Lynn Jones 'Sighting'
One of my friends from high school was Ron Irby. His roots were from my part of the Ozarks, but he grew up for some of his youth in Indiana before his family returned to the Ozarks. He and I used to ride around in his car on Fulton County's unpaved back roads, discussing Bob Dylan's songs and what that singer's obscure lyrics meant. I don't recall if we ever figured them out, but even if the philosophical implications had been resolved, little would have been achieved, as Wittgenstein might say.
Anyway -- to make a long story short -- Ron's older brother Richard has finally also moved into the Ozarks, sometime in the past few years, and writes for the local Area Wide News and possibly other media. Yesterday, he sent me notice of a performance by David Lynn Jones, among other musicians. I was glad to hear this, for Jones had been in poor physical health for a while and depressed over problems caused by a criminal who'd somehow stolen Jone's identity -- and was thus not making much music. But all that seems to be behind him now, for Richard writes:
I'm enclosing a story and some photos regarding a major David Lynn Jones "sighting". He seemed in good physical and mental state and ready to rock. The good news is, Ron Helm and Jerry Bone are working with Lynn on a comeback album.Bone had mentioned this to me some time back, and I believe that I passed it along as a rumor since I wasn't sure that I should announce it as fact, but Richard says to go ahead now. Here, also, are the three photos, the first showing Jones in center stage, with a lanky Jerry Bone in the background:
I don't recognize the big man in the baseball cap. The next photo again put Jones center stage, with Bone in the background again, the top of his head just visible:
Here's the third photograph, with Jones again center stage, but all the other musicians are equally visible:
I recognize Bone, of course, but not the others. Perhaps some knowledgeable Fulton County local could take the trouble to name them all?
Anyway, Jones was taking part in a memorial service for Gene Cooper, a local musician from Oxford, Arkansas, a small town some 13 miles south of my hometown, Salem. Richard sent a column -- "Fans, Friends and Musicians Remember Gene Cooper" -- that he'd written for some local publication, perhaps the aforementioned Area Wide News, but he didn't directly say. Here's what Richard related about Jones:
[Also present was] David Lynn Jones, a Fulton County native who hit the big time in the 80's as a songwriter and performer. An energized Jones showed he was ready for a comeback, after years out of the spotlight.I remember Gene Cooper. He used to play music over at Horseshoe Bend, Arkansas, another small town nearby, about 14 miles to the east of Salem, my hometown. I didn't know the man personally, nor did he know me -- we were of different generations -- but I might as well also say good bye:
"This isn't about us," said Jones from the stage. "This is about Gene Cooper. I love this man as much as one can love another."
Jones recounted how Cooper hired him as his guitarist at age 18.
"He is the reason I got into this business," said Jones. "He gave me a job and I made some money. Sometimes. No matter how little I made, Gene probably took less because he always had a big heart."
"Good bye, Gene."And, thanks again to Gene, though now in his passing, we once more have Jones . . .