Me & Bobby McGee: A DJ Tracy Playlist
by DJ Tracy
For you melophiles, because you love to know: before Kris Kristofferson wrote “Me and Bobby McGee,” he was a Rhodes Scholar with a degree in English Lit, he was an army Ranger, and ultimately he became a songwriter hoping it would lead to being a novelist.
About the song, here’s what he said:
“For some reason, I thought of La Strada, this Fellini film, and a scene where Anthony Quinn is going around on his motorcycle and Giuletta Masina is the feeble-minded girl with him, playing the trombone. He got to the point where he couldn’t put up with her anymore and left her by the side of the road while she was sleeping. Later in the film, he sees this woman hanging out the wash and singing the melody that the girl used to play on the trombone. He asks, ‘where did you hear that song?’ And she tells him it was this little girl who had showed up in town and nobody knew where she was from , and later she died. That night, Quinn goes to a bar and gets in a fight. He’s drunk and ends up howling at the stars on the beach. To me, that was the feeling at the end of ‘Bobby McGee.’ The two-edged sword that freedom is. He was free when he left the girl, but it destroyed him. That’s where the line ‘Freedom’s just another name for nothing left to lose’ came from.”
Oh, and the real Bobby McGee (actually McKee) was a woman.