Following on from last week's foray into the Fifty Shades phenomenon, DiS gets all 'literary' again as Buck 65 writes an exclusive piece for us about Anais Nin.
"Many years ago I met a girl. She was an electro-hippie. Her nose was her most distinguishing feature and she put it to good use. When she wasn't dancing, she listened to Swans and Labradford. She terrified me, which is what I liked about her. She became my girl friend. While we were together, she fucked other people and I didn't care.
Her main hobby was masturbation. It was an elaborate ritual for her. It involved silk pillows and things with tassels and exotic lotions and sometimes Moroccan trance music. She'd be howling in the next room while I fried sausages in the kitchen or watched baseball in the living room.
Sometimes in the afternoons she would wear clothes and imitate a regular person. It was a poor imitation. Part of her disguise was a shoulder bag that smelled like India and hung down to her knees. At any given time, there would be three or four Anais Nin books in that bag.
The electro-hippie read Anais Nin in cafes and bus shelters and in the rain. The prose of Anais Nin was also a part of her warm-up routine for her masturbation ceremonies.
After a year of her shenanigans, I learned to hate the electro-hippie. I came to hate her and anything I could associate with her and that included Anais Nin. I had never read Anais Nin when I met her and made it a point to avoid her name for years after. I couldn't disassociate thoughts of Anais Nin and her sexy diaries from the overwhelming memory of the scent of the electro-hippie's vaginal perfumes.
Ten years later, I moved to Paris. As I was learning the ropes there, I read the works of many of the English-speaking expatriates: Orwell, Hemingway, Miller. I didn't know what else to do. Henry Miller pointed the way to Anais Nin. I turned the other way. I ran, but I couldn't hide for long. A year later, Anais Nin jumped into my hands from under a Christmas tree. My benefactor was in the room and I didn't want to be rude. I spread the legs of the book and buried my nose in it, inhaling sharply. It smelled terrible, which was a relief somehow.
Is there a more boring time of year than Christmas? I think not. And so it was on some late December evening I read Anais Nin for the first time. It was out of desperation. It was that or The Nutcracker On Ice. Jaw clenched, I read a story of drunken drifters and a river that feasted on suicides. There was no sex poetry, no hauntings from the electro-hippie. Maybe it was the suicide, or maybe it was my relief, but when I closed the book and returned to Christmas Hell, I became aware of the faint tickle of tears crawling down my face. I was moved.
I never read Anais Nin again. But I had more jingle-hell to endure that fateful December. So I scavenged a pen and pad and wrote a series of verses based on the story I had read. I hoped it would break the curse of the electro-hippie's taint on my memory. It didn't. But a cornerstone for a new album had been laid. The verses became the "Riverbed" songs that threaded through my Talkin' Honky Blues record, which was released in 2003. Or was it 2002? I can't remember.
I've since lost my copy of that Anais Nin book and I'm not even sure I can remember the name of the story I read. Maybe I'll come across it again one day, but if I never do, that's just fine. If I ever bump into the electro-hippie, I'm sure she could tell me what it was."
Following the release of his album 20 Odd Years, Buck 65 plays the following shows in November:
13th, Temple Bar, BIRMINGHAM
15th, The Haunt, BRIGHTON
16th, The Garage, LONDON