Hello to you from Boo Kay Jack in general and Brian Hullfish in particular. Boo Kay Jack is the name of a knife in a poem called 'The Singing Knives' by the late surveyor/writer/oracle Frank Stanford, who shot himself in the heart three times with a .22 toward what would be the end of his late-twenties. This album is a tribute to Frank, the kind of poet Huckleberry Finn might have been had he lived to light out to the territories and chant down all those dark visions. Had Huck not himself been shot in the heart by accident that night in Reno. Now I never knew Frank, or Huck for that matter, but I have nonetheless pitched my share of pennies with them. 'Knifethrower's Blues' and 'Silver Temple Waltz' were written very much with Stanford's visions in mind. His knives. His midgets. Hogs named The Holy Ghost being ridden to church. Fish swiped from lines. Dimes shining. For a little over a year before this album was recorded, I was living in Japan, and were it not for the good friends who worked with me on this project, and the songs, I wouldn't have returned to Tucson as soon as I did. Knifethrower's Blues brought me back from the Land of the Rising Sun. Songs can be, yes, very persuasive things. Track Two - Run Brother Run Not that a good song ever benefited from someone's explanations, I feel compelled to say 'Run Brother Run' was written to put some demons out of my head. My elder brother was on the railroad tracks by way of a long boxcar named Addiction. He was walking with an associate of his in hard-time Rochester, NY when this man saw three guys running toward them. 'Run!' my bro's associate said, and took off. Well my brother, though normally streetwise, decided 'hell I don't know these guys and haven't burned them in any way so why should I waste my breath running?' Bad decision. They knocked him down and proceeded kicking for awhile. Two of the guys backed off eventually, but not the third. The third guy was more vicious. He spotted a lead pipe alongside the tracks and he took it up. Rearing back with the pipe, he brought it down at my brother's head. His right hand held above his head, my brother caught most of the blow with the webbing of his thumb. The pipe then glanced off his orbital bone. Damage? A ripped open hand. A black eye lasting six months. Various contusions. Abrasions. All from a pipe. The lead one. And of course especially the little glass one which preceded it. So for months and months I had visions of my brother being attacked on the tracks. Sometimes I would yell to him to look out. To run. Other times I'd rush in from the blindside and start swinging haymakers. Finally it was enough I guess of those poisonous daydreams and I had to get them out and trap them cage them corral them into a song. Sometimes a song is nothing but a snakebite kit. And Run Brother Run is one of those tunes. The other thing about this track is that it perhaps best represents the hard work and genius of Jim Glinski, who mixed and produced it. I'll leave it at that for now and will come back later to talk a bit about, perhaps, and why not, Atomic Lullabye. Track number 5 - Atomic Lullaby Atomic Lullaby was written on a small Japanese guitar called an ichi-go ichi-e in 10 minutes just after I'd taken the train back to Himeji from Hiroshima. I'll never forget standing in front of the atomic bomb dome underneath the wheeling, screaming ravens, one lone cat with the mark of a black bird on it's side prowling amidst the rubble which had lain there unmoved since the day the bomb fell. Sometimes it takes a big push for the things described in history books or the news to make an impact, for them to be felt deeper than the epidermal layer. Seeing the Dome and it's contents (shadow/rubble) made the A-bombing of Hiroshima horribly real - and writing the song helped me sleep that night, encouraged some of the usually intractable tears to come out from their dens and make the trek downhill.