Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Come Along and Ride Nevada Bob Gordon's Long Train To Nowhere

Last year when Gary Firstenberg passed this way to see the two homes Bob Dylan grew up in, he introduced me to a unique individual who had recently recorded a CD in Nashville called Long Train To Nowhere. He sings with a deep resonant baritone with a warmth that draws you in. It's an album of mostly covers that has been made special by a song Nevada Bob wrote in memory of his wife Carol.

What caught my interest initially was that Charlie McCoy, the studio musician who seduced Dylan away from New York to record in Nashville, is one of the backing musicians on Nevada Bob Gordon's 24 track CD.

When Mr. Firstenberg first made mention of him, he also mentioned a book manuscript he'd written about his unusual life, tentatively titled 50 Years with the Wrong Woman. It's apparent from "Carol's Song" and the stories of their life together that he's got his tongue firmly planted in his cheek with that title.

In a couple weeks Nevada Bob is flying to Nashville from his ranch outside Reno to record a second album, this time with five new songs. If we're lucky, we'll get a music video out of this so people can hear him sing and not just try to guess what he sounds like. 

An alternative title for the book might be Bob Gordon's Unorthodox Road to Success. He began his career as a police officer in a crooked police department. When he finally escaped and distanced himself from that experience the his persistence in the face of adversities produced a lifetime of anecdotal tales that are clearly beyond the pale of most of our experiences. His cousin, for what it's worth, was NASA astronaut Richard Gordon who remained on the command module during Apollo 12, making 45 passes around the moon while Pete Conrad and Alan Bean did their work on the lunar surface.

At age 30 Nevada Bob had to deal with a severe bout of cancer that ought to have ended his story. He had other plans.

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The photos on this page are from the photo shoot for this CD plus a few extras, courtesy Gary Firstenberg.

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