I was just in Tennessee for a week, visiting with an old friend who is having some health challenges at the moment and seeing other friends I haven’t seen in more than ten years now. More on that later…
One of those friends is John Wall. He is taking the most excellent care of my other friend. Without John Wall I don’t know what he would be doing. I went to visit John at his homestead by a stream. He shares this place with his fere, Lee, and they grow vegetables (Lee is a horticulturist at a local garden) and John Wall makes candles. Beautiful candles. His business, Dry Creek Candles, is his main form of support…and since he is giving such support to my old friend, I thought it would be nice if readers here gave John Wall and Dry Creek Candles a look. We all burn candles from time to time, and John’s are beautiful, hand-made, hand-dipped bee’s wax. And John is pretty cute, too. You know…for a guy.
The work involved seems almost meditative. He works with beautiful colors, as you can see above, and he also made all of his equipment from scratch. Notice those wheels holding all the candles…they’re bicycle wheels.
Turn and dip. Turn and dip. I asked him how many dips it takesto make a candle (and no…that’s not a set-up for a joke!) and he told me 35 or more. All his products are made with the least amount of additives to give you clean burning, long lasting, quality candles. Beautiful candles by a beautiful man.
Most of the time I was there, we sat on the porch and caught up on a lot of conversation. My friend and I met 35 years ago in San Francisco and we haven’t run out of things to talk about in all that time. He’s built a wonderful little hermitage/cottage/Hobbit home for himself there. He’s not well enough to stay in it now. But we went to see it and while we were there, he gave me the most wonderful gift of these old flyers from the Fillmore West. Some of them are pretty amazing….Jethro Tull, Chicago (my home town!)…It’s A Beautiful Day…Ten Years After…the Grateful Dead…John Mayall. And more. All in the inimitable psychedelic style of the day.
Here are some of them…
The amazing thing is he still had them at all. They don’t call it "ephemera" for nothing: It’s just paper…in a trunk…in the woods! This ephemera was mailed out to promote concerts at Fillmore Auditorium, but also to promote Bill Graham’s tours. Most people probably tossed them or lost them at some point. The calendars on the backs of these read like a Who’s Who of the Golden Age of Rock n’ Roll….Van Morrison…Joe Cocker…Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young,…John Sebastian…Richie Havens…Frank Zappa…Rod Stewart…and those are just the ones on the back of one of the flyers.