Wednesday, November 28, 2018

The Deak Tetralogy

The Deak novels are the comical autobiography of an all time great rock superstar and musical legend.  Deak tells his life story by explaining his lyrics and describing the strange people and ridiculous events that shaped his life and inspired his songs.  All four novels are complete and a fifth is in the works.

Born Deacon Downes in Reserve, Louisiana in 1960, Deak is a quixotic character who was inspired by the films This Is Spinal Tap and Bad News Tour.  He is a musical prodigy who achieves early and life long stardom at the age of five fronting his first band, Deak and the Ducks.

The first novel, The Deak, introduces the hero and details his life in New Orleans until age 21, and describes his birth, his early music and Bourbon Street shows, his years as a child and teen star and the tragic ending of his first marriage.  The table of contents and first five chapters follow below.

The second novel, The Second Book Of Deak, spans the years 1982-1985, with Deak relocating to a Laurel Canyon mansion to become part of the Los Angeles music scene.  The link leads to a very detailed synopsis and sample chapters.  The arc of the second novel is Deak’s accidental, unwanted and utterly absurd feud with Michael Jackson that stretches on for several years.  The novel (and Deak’s feud with MJ) concludes on July 13, 1985 at the Wembley Stadium site of the international Live Aid benefit concert. 

Because Deak's peers are rock music royalty, some story lines involve real musicians and events, like the aforementioned Michael Jackson and the Live Aid Concert.  Also appearing in no particular order are Paul and Linda McCartney, Freddie Mercury, James Brown, Prince, Bob Geldof, Elvis, Lionel Richie, Keith Richards, Mick Jagger, David Bowie, Frank Zappa, Brian Wilson, Elton John, Flea and Anthony Kiedis from the Red Hot Chili Peppers, the Smiths, Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr. and Dean Martin and more.

The third novel, Deak the Third, picks up in London with Deak at the Live Aid concert.   Follow the link to read a synopsis and sample chapters or scroll past the table of contents to read the opening of the first novel.

The Deak

Table of Contents


1)   In the Beginning, There Was the Deak
2)   First Kiss, First Song
3)   Rolling Into New Orleans
4)   Bourbon Street
5)   Deak and the Ducks
6)   Eulogy for Yulelog
7)   My Guitars
8)   Persephone
9)   Marvin the Midget
10)  Quack, Quack, Goose
11)  Storming the Charts and the Country
12)  My Vegas Debut
13)  In Cognito
14)  The First Second Coming of the Deak
15)  One Man Band
16)  I Parade Around the Earth
17)  World Dance Party
18)  Ricky Venunziano
19)  Deak and the NPS Express
20)  My Blue Period
21)  Deak in the Country
22)  Razzmatazz
23)  The Rock of Deak
24)  The Orchestral Deak
25)  Cornucopia
26)  UFO
27)  I Am God
28)  Elvis
29)  Jesus
30)  Isabella
31)  The True Second Coming of the Deak
32)  With Podi in Madrid
33)  The Arguers
34)  My Baby
35)  The Birth of Isaac
36)  Upon This Rock
37)  Deak and the Invaders
38)  Ancient Melodies
39)  Trouble at Home and on the Road
40)  The Kookie Kola Fiasco
41)  The Belle Blossoms
42)  The Worst Night of my Life


Throughout my twenty six blessed years of life literally hundreds of people have approached me with the idea of collaborating on my biography.  I am always flattered they think highly enough of the life I’ve lived to want to document and share it with my fans and the rest of the world, but I’ve always chosen to decline for a variety of reasons.  The first is that although my musical career has been long, successful and illustrious—there is no shame, I am what I am—I have always been too busy continuing it to stop, reminisce and write.  And besides that, I’m still plenty young enough that I’ve never felt until just this morning actually (I’ve been confronting my mortality here in the hospital) that the events of my life, incredible as they’ve been—there is no shame, I am what I am—warranted the composition of a biography.
Also, in trying to maintain a shred of modesty I have always deemed myself unworthy of so self indulgent an undertaking: but even as I’ve just begun with this little preface, and given it a few minutes thought, I realize that all the anecdotes and stories of my romances, affairs and my  loves; the recording sessions, the tours and television appearances, the colorful promotional interviews and the scandals could meritoriously fill volumes.  I don’t mean to sound boastful, but that is the plain, unchangeable truth—there is no shame, I am what I am.
So why now?  Why does the Deak pause at this point in his life to write his story?  Another assortment of reasons, the foremost of which is that being laid up in traction as I am with fractured vertebrae and skull I’m going to have an abundance of idle hours on my hands for the next few weeks, making the moment certainly right.  And who better to write the story of the Deak than Deak himself?  (If you want to know why I’m busted up skip ahead to the song ‘Traction’ at the end of the third book, or use it as a literary device to keep yourself in you wish.) 
I am also writing it on the advice of my long time friend, lawyer and manager Larry, to counter ongoing efforts to tarnish my image in the press.  These vicious, unwarranted attacks against my person are being perpetrated by what I call ‘envious wannabes,’ base scoundrels who have long waged an unfair war against the Deak.  People filled with desire but lacking talent become critics, and critics are all too often jealous of the genius.  Much of what is published about me is rubbish and lies, sensational exploitations of my fame fabricated for the singular purpose of selling magazines and newspapers, and I have every confidence that when reached the verdicts in the libel lawsuits currently in litigation against some very high-profile publications will vindicate my character and good name. 
With regard to litigation, I, here at the outset, on Larry’s advice, must make several outright and unequivocal statements of fact.  With regard to the numerous paternity suits pending against me, women have been wrongly accusing me a fathering their children for years—money and fame make me a constant target—and I am confident the current raft of suits will be dismissed like the past ones and the many inevitably to come.  The charges of tax evasion against me are also wrongful—I have never cheated anyone out of anything, so much as a penny—but if by some strange and unforeseen quirk the courts decide that I do owe the government money I will abide by that decision and make haste to repair every last penny. 
The only crimes I have ever committed were trashing two hotel rooms in my wild adolescence, which damages I recompensed in triplicate.  Those two instances of vandalism are the only laws I’ve ever broken, and none others.  Nevertheless Larry has suggested, and I agree, that it will serve me well at this stage of my career to adopt a charitable cause, so a portion of the proceeds from the sale of this book, and my next album, will be used to establish The Deak Foundation, to build a chinchilla preserve in an as yet undetermined corner of southern Texas.

Other than that let me just get on with it, trusting that my loving muse Persephone will guide my pen-wielding fingers as gracefully across the page as she has up and down the necks of my guitars all these years.  And since my life and music are so intimately entwined it seems logical that I tell my story by explaining my lyrics and describing the people and events in my life that inspired each song.  Peace out, rock on and love forever, my brothers and sisters.  And always remember—there is no shame, we are what we are.



Chapter 1
In the Beginning, There was the Deak

I was born in Reverse—I mean, Reserve.   Heh, heh—I get things backwards all the time!  Reserve is a small town in Louisiana about an hour west of New Orleans.  My father was a crawfish dealer and my mother a midwife, but as she understandably couldn’t midwife her own son, my aunt, who was also a midwife, held the honor of delivering me to the world.  Eight days later I was christened Deacon Evan Downes, but even the minister who dunked my head in the holy font called me Deak, and that’s how I’ve always been known.
While so many infant boys are nurtured with footballs and sports gear in their cribs by fathers that hope they will grow up to become great athletes, mine had the wisdom and foresight to lay a small guitar and six harmonicas next to me; and when she later introduced herself, I realized that my muse, Persephone, had provided him with the inspiration to do so, for which I praise and thank her constantly.
My memory dawned at the unusually early age of six months, although what I recollect was more like a vision I witnessed from the perspective of participant.  I was snoring and drooling through a nap while my parents entertained some friends in the next room.  A wind-up music box was playing ‘Pop Goes the Weasel’ behind my head, which became the soundtrack of a dream.  The notes of the melody fell from fluffy clouds, dancing and flitting in the air above my face.  One by one they dropped onto my tongue, and as I sucked and chewed on the divine confections they filled my mouth with honeyed nectar, and made my whole being tingle in ecstasy. 
I had been cradling my little guitar as I slept, and when the music box wound down I immediately picked up playing where it left off, not missing a note, as if I were willing those succulent candies to keep floating down my throat.  When at last my belly was full I awoke to see my parents and their friends circled around my crib, staring down at me in awe.  I was still playing the song, finger picking it classical style, although I had embellished the simple music box arrangement with some very ornamental arpeggios, making my instrument sound more like a harpsichord than a guitar.  My audience of six was astonished, but to prove it was no fluke I repeated the performance on three different harmonicas, in the keys of C, B-flat and the chromatic, as I clearly recall.  That was the first inkling that I was a prodigy and my thrilled parents acted in a very according and appropriate manner.

Chapter 2
First Kiss, First Song

In many ways the next year and a half was one of the most painful periods of my life, for although my brimming brain was bursting with songs I did not actually write my first one until shortly after my second birthday.  In that meantime I versed myself in the rudiments of blues, jazz, rock, classical and improvisational guitar under the tutelage of Yulelog Henderson, the greatest of the fabled blind bluesmen of New Orleans.  My parents sent for him shortly after that first performance in the crib, and although he was immensely helpful to me in the beginning, when after just a few months he was learning more than he was teaching, and my father wanted to start charging instead of paying him for the lessons, his fragile ego revealed its flaws and he returned to the Big Easy in a huff.
I practiced every day for sixteen to twenty hours, mastering the guitar and harmonica while achieving high levels of competency on piano, saxophone, clarinet, trumpet, tuba, a wide array of percussion instruments, and the acoustic double bass, which I had to play standing on a high chair.  I was able to hear a Mozart composition once and play it back perfectly before I could walk or talk.  But the whole time I was mastering the instrumental aspect of my craft the other remained trapped within my heart, as if locked within an inescapable prison where it ached and throbbed for release.  I speak, of course, of songwriting—how I wanted to sing for the joy of love and the sorrow of love lost, to elicit a chuckle or inspire a thought, to be clever and witty, and all the messages of peace and love I wanted to sing that would change the world forever. 
But I was still barely able to communicate to my parents when I was lonely for a hug and when I was hungry or needed a changing, or just plain tired and ready for a nap.  And although it was for all those reasons and more that I yearned to speak, the most powerful drive and desire I had to master the English language was so that I could commence producing the art for which I had been created.  Fortunately during those early years—and ever since—every time my frustrations reach an intolerably painful pitch Persephone always appears in my ears softly singing,  “Patience…Deak…patience….  Everything in its time…first the blade…then the ear…then the corn.”
How right she was, for an event occurred just after my second birthday that triggered the inspiration for my first song, but more importantly uncorked the bottled up geyser of music that has gushed to this very day.  It was my first smiting by a pretty face, and I will follow the lyrics of ‘Chrissy Kissy’ with the story behind them.

Chrissy Kissy

She was the girl next door to me,
I was the boy next door to her,
And when our mothers got together for tea,
One thing was for sure....

They’d leave us alone in the playpen
And go out on the lawn;
Then we’d start singin’ and laughin’ and
Dancin’ the moment they were gone.
And I’d cry....

Chrissy!  O Chrissy!
Come give some kissy kissy!
Though we’re only two
We know what to do,
And if I could talk I’d shout, I love you!

Our secret tryst went on for weeks,
They knew not of our love,
And how we two were sometimes one,
Like a hand and glove.

Then one day they caught us
With our diapers at our knees,
And snatched away and tore us apart,
Despite our gurgling pleas.

I never ever saw her again,
And her pretty little bangs,
But I think of her every now and then
And my poor heart pangs,
And I cry....

Chrissy!  O Chrissy!
Come give some kissy kissy!
Though we’re only two
We know what to do,
And if I could talk I’d shout, I love you!

The lyrics pretty much tell the whole tale.  Chrissy’s real name was Annabella Gumm, and her family lived next door to us.  Our mothers were friendly neighbors who took tea together two or three times a week, and while they were in the kitchen or out in the yard Annabella and I were left alone in the playpen.  The first few occasions were harmless enough, though only because I was too naive to read the lust behind the gleaming twinkle that appeared in her eyes every time she looked at me.  Then one afternoon, while I was enjoying a little siesta, she crawled into my arms and started smothering my face and neck with her lips.  It was my first passionate kiss, and it whet my palate for the many more I would soon enough be giving and receiving fast and furiously; but after only that single glorious eye opening kiss the Fates conspired against us and, as I sing in the song, we were torn from each other’s arms and smothered in our over protective mothers’.  She never came over again and two weeks later the Gumms moved to Cheyenne, taking Annabella away from me for what I thought was forever.
By more than coincidence I did run into her twenty two years later in Pasadena on the Big Hair tour.  What an indescribably lovely reunion.  She had been through two broken marriages, and confessed that she had always wondered what might have been had we stayed together, and showed me the ‘Deak’ tattoo that she had sported on her ankle for ten years.  She hopped aboard the tour bus and we spent a marvelous weekend together at our three sold out San Francisco shows.  Also, I played harmonica on a remake of ‘Chrissy Kissy’ a few years ago with The Shakin’ Sidewinders that was a minor hit on the Japanese charts for six or seven weeks.  

Chapter 3

Rolling Into New Orleans

For the next six months I remained holed up in the house playing and writing.  I composed roughly one hundred songs that, for lack of proper equipment, and my inability to speak words yet, were never recorded.  I remember every last one, and have used bits and themes from them in other songs over the years, and some day if I have another child or more I plan to record a selection of them for a children’s album.  For the curious, here are a few of their titles:  ‘My Sippy Straw,’ ‘The Six Fingered Fist,’ ‘Little Girls and Mini Skirts,’ ‘Pacify Me Baby,’ ‘Moo Cow Blues,’ ‘Cookies and You,’ ‘Cartoon Faces,’ ‘Take You to Neverland,’ ‘Blue Suede Shoe Blues,’ ‘Turn Me in the Hay,’ ‘Pretty Little Booties,’ ‘In My Crib,’ ‘Tie the Clock, Set My Shoes,’ ‘Dinner Belly Rings,’ ‘Belching in Rhythm,’ and ‘Naptime Lullaby’ among others.
At last my tongue string loosened and the songs began to pour out and I was just a month shy of my third birthday when my parents and I agreed I was ready for my public debut.  We booked a local men’s club hall for the performance and the turnout was disastrous.  Although I had an audience of exactly ten that night I played as though they were a hundred thousand, and my heart pumped gallons of sweat from my heart before I had finished.  Quite simply, I blew them away, they spread the word like wildfire and the next night the hall was stuffed to capacity, with hundreds more crowded at the doors, some of whom had come from as far away as five hundred miles away to hear me play.  At that second show they demanded seven encores before giving me a forty minute standing ovation and my life was never again the same.
Only the best manager and lawyer the music business has ever known, Larry Hymes, was in attendance at that show.  The overwhelming turnout of that second show produced an equally overwhelming pile of receipts, and a dispute about their division naturally arose between my father and the owner of the hall.  Larry was a man of imposing stature and a lawyer who spoke fluent legalese.  He overheard their argument, intervened on my behalf, puffed his chest and tossed out a few legal phrases and in moments reached a settlement with the manager even more favorable than my father had been seeking.  We entered into an agreement with him that night and immediately set about launching my career.  The first decision we made was to move to New Orleans where I could front a band on Bourbon Street, a hot, jamming scene that was consistently turning one incredible performer after another onto the national circuit.  As quickly as we could get our things packed and shipped ahead we were on a southbound train.
I remember viewing our venture into the unknown with trepidation and wonderment.  I was leaving behind my cozy creative cocoon to expose myself naked to the big city, to have with me as she pleased.  But I also knew the decision was right, that my family and I would be protected, and that the music of which I was guardian and dispenser would flourish and be embraced by a warm, welcoming world.  While those worries, fears and dreams crowded my tiny mind as the train trundled along, the rhythm and cadence of the rail infected me and I slipped into a meditative trance, and when we arrived at the station I took out my guitar there in the lobby and performed ‘Rolling Into New Orleans,’ which I had written in my head on the train.

Rolling Into New Orleans

Landscape window paintings pass by me on the train,
My melancholy mood plays in the patter of the rain.
I’m leaving home forever, never going back,
With nothing but a dream and a guitar in a sack.

Courage, son, my papa tells me,
As mama dandles me on her knee,
And even though I’m only three,
I’m quickly becoming a man.

Rolling into New Orleans,
Jazz parades and Dixie queens,
Hot corn bread, red rice and beans,
Hoping she’ll fit like perfect jeans.

I know there will be bumps and traps and ruts,
Diversions, ditches and pitfalls,
But I ride this train of life through the tunnel
At the end of which my muse calls.
She’ll smooth the hills to fill the valleys
And make water glass if there I tread;
She’ll quell the fires, cushion the rocks
And keep my mouth full of bread.

Courage, my boy, papa tells me,
As mama dandles me on her knee,
And even though I’m only three,
I’m quickly becoming a man.

Rolling into New Orleans,
Jazz parades and Dixie queens,
Hot corn bread, red rice and beans,
Hoping she’ll fit like perfect jeans...
Hoping she’ll fit like perfect jeans...
Hoping she’ll fit me....

There were about thirty people there in the station, and the moment I finished they burst into a loud cheer of whistles and applause.  “Encore!  Encore!” a man wearing a hat cried.  They demanded more, but I was a bit overwhelmed by their response, and so I nervously jammed a few instrumental bars of ‘Pop Goes the Weasel.’  That was met with more thunderous approval, and the same man doffed his cap, put ten dollars in and went round to everyone imploring:  “Come now!  Fill the hat!  That’s one hot little cat!  Fill the hat for that hot little cat!”  Then he came to us and insisted on knowing my name.
“I’m the Deak,” I squeaked.
He shook my hand, then stuffed it with the bills.  “Jacob Kilvenny.  You are incredible!  Where do you play?  You should play out!  I can line up gigs for you....”
Larry hastened to put his hand on my shoulder and protectively replied:  “He’s already under management.”  Then he whisked my parents and me away to a waiting car.  As we cruised to the house I counted the money—over one hundred dollars!  My starry eyes swelled with greed and shot Larry suspicious looks from where I sat in the back.  

Chapter 4

Bourbon Street

The house was one of Larry’s properties, on the corner of Dauphine and Toulouse, one block off Bourbon.  It was five comfortable rooms with a spacious music studio at the back fully outfitted with recording equipment and various instruments.  Both he and my parents were in adamant agreement that I be kept in seclusion until they figured out a way to smuggle me in and out of the house without belying my whereabouts to the many people who would surely be hounding me from the moment I debuted on Bourbon Street. 
Larry bade us goodnight and left, and then my parents began unpacking while I diddled with a mandolin.  It bored me quickly, however, as did all the other instruments in my new studio, for I only wanted to go outside and explore.  I was madly restless to do so, and ere very long couldn’t stand being cooped up one moment more.  I checked and found my parents conveniently upstairs preoccupied with their books, and so slipped unnoticed into the night. 
I followed the music like a wafting scent into the intoxicated crowd, wandering forward while gazing up and around me in total awe.  I was dazzled by the lights and the action, the pretty women, the drunken kissing and groping, and the music!  Jazz on the left, blues on the right, Dixieland straight ahead, all horns, drums and guitars, guitars, guitars!  It seemed like a paradise, but soon proved to be no more than a mirage.
I was feeling a bit thirsty, and still had all the money in my pocket, so I stopped at a beer stall and bought myself a cup of cola.  I wandered on through another crowded block, where I paused and listened to a couple of bands.  I have to admit I was disappointed, for although they had sounded good from a distance, upon closer scrutiny one could clearly hear that the instruments were out of tune and the musicianship generally sloppy.  It’s no secret that I love improv and open jams but these cats were all over the place like cars out of control!  The bass player sounded like he was following the guitarist in the bar next door, the drummer like he was keeping beat to the feet in the street, and I don’t know what that harmonica player was thinking but he would have sounded better if he’d had a kazoo or even a hollow bamboo shoot stuffed in his blowhole!  In short, it was a huge letdown of high expectations and I left that doorway despondent that the fabled music scene was, in truth, drunken discordant covers of the simplest standards.  But it did serve well in bolstering my confidence that I would very soon ascend like fresh cream to the top of that crop.
I briefly lent my ears to two more bands which proved no better, so I gave up on the music and started ogling the women.  My fledgling libido was racing like a horse and I longed, yearned, craved, ached and hungered like I was in a famine for a kiss from any of the hundreds of women streaming by me with ruby lips, pearly teeth, dark eyes and dressed to the nines.  I wanted to try out one of the pickup lines I had been working on but I was too overwhelmed by the crowd—which was more than twice my height—and too self conscious to speak, and so I stumbled around with my mouth agape.  Then I suddenly felt myself snatched up into the air and found myself staring into one of the painted faces I had been lusting.
“What a cute little boy!” she said to her girlfriend then turned back and asked me.  “Where are your parents?”
Without the slightest reservation or hesitation I lunged, and in the next instant my mouth was pressed into hers giving it a deep, passionate kiss.  She resisted at first, then gave in for several seconds, then resisted again and gently moved me a few inches further away.
“Where did you learn to do that?” was her exasperated response.
“Chrissy?  Who is she?”
“Kissy!” I answered, plunging back in.
She indulged herself in a second and longer kiss, then swung me back off her face again.  By then my feet hadn’t touched the ground in three minutes.  “How old are you?”
“Three but that’s irrelevant,” I replied.  “Where are you two staying?”
“We have a room at the Monteleone…why?”
“What do you say the three of us go back there and play romper room?” I suggested.
They were shocked speechless by the idea, during which wordless moments I took a closer look into their faces and realized that they were much like the music—lovely and enticing from a distance, but up close the truth, which can never be truly hidden, revealed them to be time worn past their blooms, with sloppy makeup poorly disguising topographical maps of wrinkles and blemishes. 
I sighed in despair, but then thought:  Beggars can’t be choosers.  “Well, what do you say?” I asked, then mounted my third labial assault, this one on her friend.
We were interrupted almost at once by a stern, authoritative voice.  “Excuse me, but may I ask what is going on here?”
We turned to see a large, muscular, broad shouldered cop standing there with his stout arms folded across his barrel chest.
The woman who still held me suspended in the air tried to answer, but she couldn’t get two words from of her mouth so I spoke out.  “If you’d just look around you’d see plenty of other couples making out so why are you hassling us?”
“Because they aren’t doing it with three year old children,” he answered.
“I can assure you, officer,” I confidently replied, “that I’m a full grown man trapped in a little boy’s body.  I’m way beyond my years.”
“He does kiss like it,” the women said.
“What’s your name?” the policeman asked me.
“Deak,” I proudly replied.
“Deak what?”
“Not ‘Deak what?’” I cried.  “THE DEAK!  You’ll know me very well soon enough and will regret having treated me thus—I swear it!”
“Where are your parents?” he continued contemptuously.
“Man, what’s with the third degree?” I indignantly demanded, then insisted the woman set me down, which she did.  “Why don’t you go arrest some criminals instead of harassing the citizens you’re hired to protect, and with whose taxes your salary is paid?” I shouted up at him.
“Why don’t you learn to respect the law?” he rejoined.  “It’s a lesson I’ll be glad to teach.  What’s in your cup?  Are you drinking under age?”
He bent down to grab my arm, but I evaded his grasp with a quick step back and answered:  “It’s a moron and coke!”  I threw the soda in his face, then bit his wrist, kicked his shin and sprinted away calling over my shoulder, “Sweet adieu, ladies!  It’s been lovely!”
I never looked back, so I don’t know if he gave pursuit, but I do know he never caught me, as I was able to hide myself amongst and swiftly navigate the tangled legs of the crowd.  I slipped down a side street and walked back on Burgundy to our house on Toulouse.  My nerves were a bit frazzled from the whole experience, so I took several deep breaths before going in.  When I finally did, my mother flew across the room, swooped me up in her arms and smothered me with a suffocating embrace, crying, “O my baby!  Where have you been?  We were worried sick!  Your father’s out looking for you right now!  He should be back any minute, and we were going to call the police if you hadn’t showed up.  Where did you go?”
“Mother, I can hardly breathe.  Would you please stop blubbering and put me down?” I calmly requested.
She hesitantly acquiesced, saying:  “Now I thought we discussed that you weren’t to leave the house at all yet, least of all alone!  And at night!  You’re only three years old!”
“What can I say?  Curiosity got the best of me,” I replied.  She started to respond, but I interrupted.  “Look, I’m not your normal kid.  Do you really think God above would give me all these talents and then fail to protect me wherever I walk in this world?  This world I am here to sing to and about?  I think not.  Have a little faith!  Jeepers!”
And on that note I went into my studio, grabbed a guitar and hastily composed the song ‘Bourbon Street.’

Bourbon Street

City of fools!  Wicked charms!
Counterfeit jewels!  Spiritual harms!

See the pretty lights, how they dazzle the eye,
Attracting drunken moths to the streetlight stars in the sky.
And see the pretty women, how they make you dance,
Stirring thoughts of…mmm!  C’mon!  Take a chance!
And hear the strains of music drifting through the night,
But in this seeming perfect scene there’s something not quite right,
Lights are not stars,
Lust is not love,
Your guitars are out of tune
And you’re a crow not a dove.

It’s the marketplace in Babylon, Bourbon Street…
Where phony bologna muffalettas melt in the heat!
Anything that would be good is trampled by the feet
Of the drunken mindless zombies marching Bourbon Street.

Your smile beguiles!  All goodness has fled!
You work your wiles!  You’re the living dead!
Your streets are paved, but not with gold,
That’s beer and puke and rancid mold.
The air is warm, but your heart is cold,
And you have no soul because it’s been sold...

At the marketplace in Babylon, Bourbon Street…
Where phony bologna muffalettas melt in the heat!
Anything that would be good is trampled by the feet
Of the drunken mindless zombies marching Bourbon Street.

Chapter 5
Deak And The Ducks

Soon thereafter I held the first rehearsal with my first group, The Ducks.  They were accomplished seventeen year old twin brothers, Dicky and Duncan Duckworth, who played the bass and drums respectively, and the name Deak and the Ducks presented itself as obvious and natural. 
Larry had discovered them busking in Jackson Square and his ears proved to be as keen as his business savvy, for despite the differences in age and musical ability there was rarely an awkward musical moment between us:  we connected and clicked instantaneously, and they learned my songs as if they knew them already.  Even I was astounded at how well they gelled with my playing.  By way of introducing the band to the audience I wrote the eponymous ditty, ‘Deak and the Ducks,’ which was our first hit and our signature song.

Deak and the Ducks

We are Deak, Dicky and Duncan Duck;
I sing and play guitar to their quack and cluck;
We’re here to rock and to make a buck;
Don’t care what you think, no, we don’t give a duck;
Still we wish you all the very best of luck,
Sincerely, Deak and the Ducks…
Sincerely, Deak and the Ducks…
Sincerely, Deak and the Ducks…
Sincerely, Deak and the Ducks….

Robert Charest

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