For my first post in the ‘Love’ category I will highlight a great man who was a very bright soul in this often-times cruel and dark world…..Wesley Willis. As well as, and more importantly, a great documentary that tells the tale of his life, his artwork and his foray in the music industry; Wesley Willis’s Joyrides.
Some of you may remember Wesley Willis from when he surfaced in the late 90’s and early 2000’s, playing his unique brand of music in small and large clubs across the country. Some of his hilarious and outrageous song titles included, ‘Suck a Caribou’s Ass’, ‘Rock n Roll McDonald’s’, ‘My Mother Smokes Crack Rocks’, ‘Suck a Pitbull’s Dick’ and the ever popular ‘Cut the Mullet’. I was a young teenager when Wesley surfaced and to me he was hysterical. Everytime I heard his songs, I laughed…….and to this day I laugh. But there was a lot more to the man than him saying things like, ‘Suck a wooly mammoths rotten booty hole’.
Wesley was born into poverty in Chicago, IL. At the age of 26 he was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia. I won’t go into the mans complete biography, you can look that up online. But despite the mans shortcomings, he was a genius artist, a genuine person and a headstrong musician. You can’t help but laugh when you see him talk, sing or interact with people. And it’s not a laughter from cruelty……it’s a laughter from joy, happiness and hilarity.
Unfortunately for myself, I didn’t get to experience his live performances where he would play music, then greet some fans and head-butt you repeatedly if he liked you. But fortunately, I saw a screening of Joyrides at the Florida Film Festival and learned that Wesley Willis was much more than a crazy musician who had a potty mouth. Yes….this is an age of miniscule attention spans and instant gratification…..but please, do yourself a favor. Sit down and watch Joyrides. It will change your life.
I have so much to say about Wesley……though I don’t want to ruin it with a long winded mavblog post. I love the guy…..and I didn’t even know him. Any man who can make you laugh until you’re slapping your knee, make you envious of his unfortunate life circumstances, put you in awe with his artistic abilities….and then go sing songs about termites while head-butting fans…..is ‘ok’ in my book. Here’s to you Wesley Willis…..may your bright soul shine above us and guide us all to be better people.
Wesley Willis (1963-2003)
You can find ‘Wesley Willis’s Joyrides’ online to watch for free or you can purchase the film here, which I highly recommend. I met the filmmakers and they’re really great people. To learn more about Wesley you can check out his website (not sure who maintains it since his passing). And oh yeah, do yourself another favor and listen to his music. Just check out a few songs on youtube. ‘Suck My Dogs Dick’, ‘Cut The Mullet’, ‘Suck A Caribou’s Ass’. If you’re not laughing after listening to those…..there’s either something wrong with you and/or you think you’re way too important or superior and you need to relax.