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Shelter

Secret Republic - The mysterious inhabitants of the Tom Petty song universe.

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All these characters, so fascinating to me. The wealth of enigma, the layers and dimensions of story telling in those songs. What's told and what is merely hinted at..

I guess there are too many to mention, but a few that always really struck a deep chord with me.. sent me on wild inner journeys, are Maggie (how's that tornado shaping up, Maggie?) and Lazy Jim (where's he headed, other than just away, and what's in that bottle.. in that note he tried to write..?) Then of course there's Speedball (wonder whatever Big he's working on and where he's at now, unless in a ditch somewhere?) and the mysterious Melinda (is she really the same woman that keeps a 3D Jesus in a picture frame? Isn't the Red River a wonderful way to get out of Clay County, or have I read too much Mark Twain again..?)

Now, what are some of your favourite characters from all the stories Tom gave us?

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All of the people in "Walkin' From The Fire" - there's a fascinating movie which plays in my head every time I listen to that song.  And the woman in "No Second Thoughts."  And yes, what happened to Speedball and who was his silent partner - metaphorical or actual?

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Sally (the girl who said "bye bye" when she saw the size of the pocketbook of that city man who came to town)... Sometimes I think Sally could be that girl who probably works in a restaurant or sings in a night club.

Sally did what she had to do... And she deserves the best of everything in the world.

We never know if Sally finally found whatever she was looking for. What do you think?

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I think it was the kind of thing someone says and they believe what they're saying even as they know it's never going to happen.  Tom was a master of emotional nuance both in his lyrics and his lyrical delivery.

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Another fascinating character is that girl who payed for his cigarettes in that 7-11.

They were friends at first sight, maybe because they both were different from the rest of the people... There is no need of any explanation, it was just something in their blood... They were just dogs on the run. Maybe that fascinating girl who payed for his cigarettes is that bleached blonde who light his cigarettes in a room painted blue and grey...

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2 hours ago, chimera said:

And yes, what happened to Speedball and who was his silent partner - metaphorical or actual?

I think his silent partner is a prostitute. A classic cliché to portray a man who is alone, a man who pays just to talk; he was not looking for romance... Just someone he could trust.

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What about those "friends".. living in "a brick house, painted white and brown.." Is that gonna be sufficient description to find the place.. to "track em down"? And who are these people? What town are we in, anyway.. what will the weekend bring? Just me who smell more than a joyful bar run with some old friends here..? 

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18 minutes ago, Shelter said:

What about those "friends".. living in "a brick house, painted white and brown.." Is that gonna be sufficient description to find the place.. to "track em down"? What town are we in, anyway.. what will the weekend bring? Just me who smell more than a joyful bar run with some old friends here..? 

Do you think the "cash" sound in this song has something to do?

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Speedball has always been one of my favorites characters.

Joe is just trying to keep things simple ... aren't we all

Others 

- The ranger, the chambermaid , the drunk sidekick and the Indian who shoots out the light 
- The girl in boots and silver spurs.
- I have always wondered what happened in the bathroom and what was the concern?
 

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Another fascinating character who lives into a wasted song... That girl who is a loser and a forgiver, but she still finds good where anyone could.

She deserves to be remembered in Tom's voice. She has been deserved a place into the American Treasure. But they left her alone again.

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What Are you Doing?

  • would we be thinking of a name ending with o?
  • but maybe there was more than one annoying person following them around?

2 Gunslingers

  • oh, while I adore the gunslingers' moments of clarity, I also dig the stranger muttering his complaints to his missus.  Maybe they argued all the way home?  so while one fight stops another begins? :)

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3 hours ago, Big Blue Sky said:

What Are you Doing?

  • would we be thinking of a name ending with o?

Perhaps...

June 1979: "Mr. Petty said he sold his fan club, with the explanation that it wasn't making him any money. This was found out after making two trips of 1000 miles, each fruitless attempts to meet with him. It was necessary to appoint a personal representative for myself, as he refused to speak directly to me about it."

Hmmm....

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8 hours ago, Big Blue Sky said:

I also dig the stranger muttering his complaints to his missus.  Maybe they argued all the way home?  so while one fight stops another begins? :)

Interesting dimension.. this is what I'm talking about!

And speaking of those perhaps less obvious characters, the supporting actors, as it were, in these little scenarios we all love to get ourselves lost in from time to time, who is that friend in Mendocino (Trip to Pirate's Cove) and what harvest are we talking about... Is there some manual labor in sight, or is it a trip inside a trip, so to speak.. new adventures, so far unspoken..

 

 

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8 hours ago, RedfordCowboy said:

I've always felt a sadness for the 'Orphan of the Storm', and that hurricane that blew her back to Houston....

Oh yes - another good one!!  The hunger in her veins (which I took to mean her body was still addicted on some level, even if 20 years ago she'd gone clean & moved away from Houston). And now because of losing her house in the hurricane, she's back in the big smoke again.  Also love "copper colored sky"!

But sin spoke
A constant invitation
It was in her veins
And wouldn't let her go

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Well, Eddie certainly plays an important role… he is the first one that comes to (my) mind.

But he isn’t, to me, what really makes the song. That’s in the guitars.

Much more interesting to me is the English refugee in „Louisiana Rain“. I don’t know why, maybe because Petty draws such a strange, realistic picture. Who is this guy? He’s a bit scary.

My favorite is maybe the cast of „Crawling Back to You“:

The ranger came with burning eyes
The chambermaid awoke surprised
Thought she'd seen the last of him
She shook her head, let him in

(…)

It was me and my sidekick
He was drunk and I was sick
We were caught up in a barroom fight
'Til an Indian shot out the lights

Boy, I love those verses!!! Each one  is like a short story.

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The characters of Tweeter & The Monkey Man should all meet up with Spike in Dubs, now that would be a Tarantino classic movie right there... with The Heartbreakers starring as themselves as the house band with Johnny Depp (aka Eddie Rebel) playing Tom!

I somehow see Jan & Spike riding out of Gainesville off into the sunset in a hail of bullets just before the end credits!:)

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