Monday, July 31, 2017

Sam Shepard dead at 73

Sam Shepard dead at 73

This creates a strange situation where an actor dies before the real-life person he portrayed. Shepherd played Chuck Yeager in 1983, covering events from 1947-1961, when Yeager was in his twenties and early thirties. (Shepard himself was actually 40 when The Right Stuff was released, but was chosen for the role because of the sturdy, laconic gravitas he brought to the role, a presence that might not have been achieved by an actor in his mid twenties.)

1947 was 70 years ago, but Yeager, now a nearly legendary figure whose name is spoken in whispered admiration, is still alive. (He's 94.)


  1. As stated elsewhere, it's clear Yeager is immortal.

  2. Sam Shepard co-wrote Bob Dylan's Brownsville Girl.

    Well, there was this movie I seen one time
    About a man riding ’cross the desert and it starred Gregory Peck
    He was shot down by a hungry kid trying to make a name for himself
    The townspeople wanted to crush that kid down and string him up by the neck

    Well, the marshal, now he beat that kid to a bloody pulp
    As the dying gunfighter lay in the sun and gasped for his last breath
    “Turn him loose, let him go, let him say he outdrew me fair and square
    I want him to feel what it’s like to every moment face his death”

    This is one of Dylan's lengthy epic songs. My favorite lines:

    She said, “Welcome to the land of the living dead”
    You could tell she was so broken hearted
    She said, “Even the swap meets around here are getting pretty corrupt”

    You know, it’s funny how things never turn out the way you had ’em planned
    The only thing we knew for sure about Henry Porter is that his name wasn’t Henry Porter
    And you know there was somethin’ about you baby that I liked that was always too good for this world
    Just like you always said there was somethin’ about me you liked
    that I left behind in the French Quarter