Lou’s Great Songs of 2015 vol.5: ‘Went Looking For Warren Zevon’s Los Angeles’ by Lucero
Everybody has at least one beggar that they cross paths with often but always fail to make any attempt at an introduction. Sometimes the passing is warranted especially if the beggar feels threatening. Other times it can be more of a game, one where the non-beggar feels suckered in the end. One great example of the game at its finest is conducted by a street person I like to dub: The Rittenhouse Actress. She’s an older lady that has the appearance that she may be of Creole descent but this is more as a result with how she conducts herself. She wears these opulent dresses that were more than likely purchased at a theater thrift shop, her diamond earring reek of a cubic zirconian blend found at the finest flea markets, they almost glisten as ostentatiously as the 80’s hair gelled to the side of her face ready for its moment as an extra in a Jody Watley video while her makeup looks like it has been done in a funeral parlor. If you happen to be walking towards any corner near Rittenhouse where she may be, it’s kind of hard taking your eyes off of her. If you’re lucky, she might perform her act for you which consists of falling onto the ground to garner sympathy, using this sympathy to get assistance from a kind stranger (aka tourist aka future victim) which piggy-backs into her using this sympathy to get money out of them. It’s one of the better hustles downtown. Sure beats the large obese man that sits off 15th Street shaking a coffee cup while screaming “I take pennies” but will not squander the opportunity to yell at you if you pass him by with no acknowledgement. Or the guy that wanders up and down 18th St. asking people if they have 20 or 40 bucks to help him get his life back together and keep him from going back to jail.
I have to hand it to the Rittenhouse Actress for her hustle. She should get something for the amount of work she puts into it. A couple months ago she had my own mom fooled by it. When I told my mom that lady is a scam artist and to not give her money, she would not believe me; when half the staff of Parc rushed out upon seeing her attempt to assist the Rittenhouse Actress and told her the same thing (while also not one bit hesitant whisking the Actress away), she finally came to reality. The truth of the matter is I should have let my mom give the lady money. With all the preparation and calculation the Rittenhouse Actress uses, it almost feels criminal to overlook her donation. We seem to have no problem putting our change from WaWa in a WaWa charity jug next to the register. WaWa does not do anything to earn the extra money. The Rittenhouse Actress does.
She’s kind of like a band that has been around for years. You notice the band however you never get around to listening to the band. Then one day, a song by them comes onto the radio. You stop everything your doing and you turn the radio up. While the song is playing, maybe you Shazam it, or Google a lyric. If you’re too preoccupied hopefully you’ll get to hear the DJ announce who played the song on the radio. Next thing you know you want to support the band, see them live, buy merchandise and give them your money. Sometimes all it takes is one song to make all the difference. In this case, the song ‘Went Looking For Warren Zevon’s Los Angeles’ by Lucero is a perfect example. Lucero has been around for years, almost two decades. They play the type of music that should have had me hooked years ago but for some reason they were nothing more than a blip on my radar. Until I heard this song a couple months ago. This was right after listening to Dawes on World Cafe cover Warren Zevon’s ‘Desperados Under the Eaves’ which Taylor Goldsmith (frontman for the Southern Californian band) says is the greatest song ever written about Los Angeles. As an added bonus, I’m going to include this cover (the one performed first for Letterman by special request) down below. I would encourage anybody that appreciates music to give Lucero a shot, over the years they never stopped making music no matter how hard it has been to crack the music industry. Hopefully more golden nuggets of sound like this one fall in front of my ears at the right time and catch my attention. Just like that Rittenhouse Actress, they deserve a little support. It has been a treat going back and listening to Lucero’s vast catalog. Their new album ‘All A Man Should Do’ came out on September 18th and they are currently on a national tour. Be on the lookout!
Here’s the track that caught my eye on the radio
Here’s Dawes covering what Taylor Goldsmith told David Dye on World Cafe is the greatest song ever written about Los Angeles
“Enjoy every sandwich.” Warren Zevon