Dear Friend and Reader:
Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. I know that historically, there’s some bad stuff behind the tradition, but in the contemporary world, gratitude is something we need to cultivate. We take a lot for granted.
We are all taking a lot less for granted today.
My personal gratitude list begins with the people I have around me: our collective of artists, writers, editors, researchers, developers and support staff who make it possible for Planet Waves to serve our purpose. Purpose has two sides: the ability to connect with it, and resonance in the world. We bring the first. You bring the second.
Eric, and Planet Waves FM microphone with Jimi Hendrix “dog tag.”
While much has been lost in the world this year, Planet Waves is one of the few entities to emerge in stronger condition than we were one year ago, based on wholly legitimate means. Recent and ongoing events have helped us focus our mission, which has always been a fusion of spiritual, scientific, social and artistic.
I am grateful we do not have advertising on our website — that’s my personal stand against capitalism. It’s another way of saying thank you for being our reader, subscriber, customer or supporter. You make it possible for us to do something that is becoming a bit of a unicorn: to have journalistic ethics that we state out loud, and aspire to live up to every day.
Our society could solve all of its problems if one seemingly small thing happened: the media told the truth. We are doing our bit, staying independent, and working with others around the world who are also doing so. Today I am grateful to be able to advocate for your health choices, and your right to take care of yourself and your family as you see fit.
Music Specials: Our Answer to the Holiday Blues Thing
The holidays are difficult for many people, even in a “normal” year. I know this from my own experience. I know many people don’t have somewhere to go, especially this year.
When I approached Bob Dylan’s organization in 2017 with a proposal to do a Christmas music special to keep people company, they loved the idea.
In 2018 and 2019, we moved the special to Thanksgiving. So for three years I’ve been invited to create my own personal Dylan anthologies based on my appreciation and study of his work. This goes back to the 1970s when my mom bought me his Writings and Drawings.
I’m taking a year off from making a new special this year (they take many weeks), though we have the ones from Thanksgiving 2018 and Thanksgiving 2019 for you. You will see how they have evolved over the years. Each has different distinctive qualities that I emphasized (for example the 2017 Christmas special features much from his Christmas album, and last year, I did a master’s thesis on Bob’s favorite song, Peggy-O.
Think of it! I stole the name of “Planet Waves” from a Dylan album, and in return, he’s been nothing but generous with us.
About Bob: I know how much of his life he loves to live on the tour bus, so yesterday I asked Jeff Rosen, his manager and our point of contact, about how he’s doing. He replied, “Bob is doing great. He’s always got a million projects cooking.” (We then moved on to a discussion of the best books about the Vietnam War.)
This is all by way of saying thank you. Thank you to everyone who works with me every day, thank you to you who read our articles and listen to our broadcasts, thank you to the Facebook hecklers who get me to focus my reasoning process, and thank you to all who support independent media.
The First Amendment is first for a good reason. It is the immune system of American society, and by extension, of the world.
I’ll see you Monday (or so) with the monthly horoscope edition for December. Remember, I’ll be cutting back things here and there to help get the annual editions done.
PS — Some of these links will take you to our new website, and others to Planet Waves FM. Please visit the new site, register, or revive your Core Community membership. If you cannot, there will always be plenty available for free.