Reading the very brilliant musician David Aaron’s account of meeting Stevie Wonder has me thinking about meeting Odetta. Earthday 2000 The Bitter End, New York. Brian Hassett invited me to perform part of the sequence of performers that included Paul Krassner – each doing 10 minutes. There was a grand piano so I played this harmonic piece and this other song about racists. Afterward Paul Krassner was very kind to me, the feeling was mutual. He was hilarious. He was pals with Lenny Bruce and so was Odetta (or did Paul say Odetta’s husband was pals w Lenny?). I realized Odetta was in the audience during Paul’s stand-up set when he saluted her seated with friends at the back of the room and that seemed pretty electric, I didn’t think I would meet her as well. But after the performances were finished and people were having drinks, milling about, gabbing, flirting, scheming, whatever people do – Paul was talking to me and then Odetta approached him and he said to her I want you to meet Bob Wiseman and she takes both my hands before Paul finishes his sentence and she says (insert proud aunt sound) I know who Bob Wiseman is – and she kisses my hands. I’m just wondering where the candid camera operators are hiding. I don’t remember clearly what I managed to say to her but I was freaked out to be on the receiving end of admiration from her. In my imagination I wondered if somehow this meeting was going to turn into me becoming known in America. I have had many moments where I thought good shit was about to happen….. but nothing happens. But so what – Odetta was moved by one or both of my songs and that’s a fucking top of the 9th home run with the bases loaded. Paul Krassner.