John Weatherford Does Not Want to Be a Sucker

28 Mar

The theme of Issue No.2 is “Nobody Wants to Be a Sucker.” It was a phrase I heard somewhere sometime. That phrase is on the first page of the zine in lieu of an editor’s note, and each piece of writing in that issue connects somehow to the idea of suckerhood.

As a little extra extra, we asked several friends of Dove&Snake, who are into what one might call an eclectic assortment of music, to each put together a playlist based on the theme “Nobody Wants to Be a Sucker.” We’ll post the playlists here on the blog, along with streaming links and/or videos, if possible, so you can listen in on our musically inclined friends’ collections of songs.

Here’s John Weatherford’s 13-track “Nobody Wants to Be a Sucker” mixtape, complete with some links, videos, and liner notes:

JW: I tried to build in a rise and fall to the mixtape like I would a real album. Here they are in listening order, with explanations.

1. Sexy Sadie – The Beatles: This song is a response to being a sucker. The Beatles became big followers of the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in the mid sixties, only to realize that he was playing them for fools. This song was written in defiance and was originally supposed to be called “Maharishi.” Producers thought that was a bad idea because they hadn’t yet learned the record selling value of a beef. This song was ahead of its time; calling people out wasn’t the art form it is today.

2. Popular – Nada Surf: Nobody wants to be a sucker, especially in high school.

3. Fidelity – Regina Spektor: Getting your heart broken can make anyone feel like a sucker. Then you just get over it. Or maybe not. Maybe you just play “what if” forever.

4. Uncle Walter – Ben Folds Five: Everyone has that guy in your family who has ridiculous stories, and the whole time he is telling them you are thinking, “This guy must take me for some kind of chump.” Well, I have that guy in my family and the stories turned out to be true. I saw pictures.

5. Billie Jean – Michael Jackson: Once upon a time, Michael Jackson was a lot less creepy. Then a lady tried to say that her baby was Michael’s, so he wrote this song saying he wasn’t a sucker and he wasn’t going to pay his non-baby mama.

6. Naive – The Rentals: Everybody knows that they really are a gullible fool. Sometimes you just have to decide if you want your friends or your girlfriend to figure it out first.

7. Steven’s Last Night in Town – Ben Folds Five: Sometimes a guy will come around, and he seems really charming, and everyone loves him. He tells great stories, good jokes, can mix a mean rum & Coke, juggles. You get the picture. But then the guy stays on your couch and doesn’t leave for a long time because you are a sucker and don’t have a spine. This happened to Ben Folds, so he wrote a song about it. Seems fair.

8. Barrier – Jorma Kaukonen and Tom Hobson: Nobody wants to be remembered as a failure, so we spend an absurd amount of time trying to leave a sucker-less legacy. It doesn’t work for most people.

9. I Just Threw Out the Love of My Dreams – Weezer, featuring Petra Haden: This is one of my favorite songs ever. If you ever get head over heels for a girl or a guy and then figure out it isn’t gonna work, it can suck, but if you still obsess over them after the fact it can be even less bearable. But that is what great synth-rock love songs are made of.

10. Lovefool – The Cardigans: This song is a guilty pleasure of mine from high school. I guess sometimes you just embrace the fact that you are indeed a sucker. That’s kind of what this song is about. A girl falls for a guy, and since she can’t stop thinking about him, she just confesses her love and then tells her love that he doesn’t have to actually love her as long as he will tell her that he does. It’s pathetic, but I think I identify more than I would care to admit.

11. I’m Leaving You Because I Don’t Love You – Jens Lekman: Brutally honest anti-sucker Swedish super pop.

12. Be Careful with a Fool – Johnny Winter: When a crossed Albino warns you that he might hurt you in the end, PLEASE DON’T BE A SUCKER!

13. The Greatest Man that Ever Lived – Weezer: If you are ever revealed as a sucker and you want to convince yourself that you are instead a true hustler, this should due the trick. You will also become a chauvinist pig, but at least you ain’t a suckah.

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One Response to “John Weatherford Does Not Want to Be a Sucker”

  1. Emily Weatherford 28.03.09 at 6:11 pm #

    This is the best “sucker” playlist I’ve seen…

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