Unfinished, unedited essay. Excuse the drips.

Sound your voice ... I forget where I read that, but it's a phrase I enjoyed like the phrase everybody is howling now, I thought and then typed it and then retyped it and retype it again here. Music and prose combined I also thought make the drumbeat of a sentence and the word drumbeat is inspired by a James Wood essay. The Fun Stuff: Homage to Keith Moon is about how The Who man inspired Wood to play drums.

The essay is autobiographical. Wood says that on hearing The Who as a kid he tried imitating Moon on a friend's older brother's drumkit. Moon spoke to boys, I guess, in those days anyway. 1974 I was born. My first Moon memory was in about 1982. He played the paedophile Uncle Ernie in Tommy, a film I watched during my first flu and had a nightmare about where I was kind of blind, deaf and dumb and in loads of debt. But he amused me, Moon. I saw The Who at Isle of Wight, my dad said and he talked with my mom about Moon's antics and I laughed at the smashing up of the drumkits and the Rolls Royces' driven into swimming pools and the TV sets thrown out of hotel windows. Cliche I know. At 16 I'd eventually throw my old TV set out of my bedroom window as homage to Keith Richards and Moon. And I'd eventually sit up and down on a piano keyboard and break the strings accidentally but not as a homage to Moon. Back to earlier years though, my dad said: Animal's based on Keith Moon. Animal was my fave Muppet, the mad drummer with the mad eyes. And Moon had mad eyes, I felt. But they seemed friendly, the white of his eyes did like a cow's but Moon had a wild glint I thought I understood. I don't know.

Woods compares Moon's drumming to his ideal sentence. It's rebellious, a jazzy but tight but a splurge of a style, writes Wood. I paraphrase. It's the kind of sentence Wood himself wants to write, having published a novel, only he's too chickenshit.

He says:


This inspired me to look for this Moon kind of sentence in DHL, Bellow and DFW. So by my pillow I stacked two book piles. All paperbacks. So there's The Rainbow, Twilight in Italy, Apocalypse, Herzog, Him with his Foot in his Mouth, It All Adds Up, Infinite Jest, A Supposedly Fun Thing, Brief Interviews. In each I dip. Flicking thru the pages, stopping on paragraphs I think chunky enough, I spent a weekend searching for these Moonlike sentences.

Here's what I found.

pg 214 Herzog
pg 156 or 7 - pg 120 - DHL essays
Forget what in DFW.