No, this is not about Trent Reznor selling out, nor about the recent cover of l\lil/l's hurt by Johnny Cash on last year's album American IV: The Man Comes Around. But we're getting closer.

Roommate achan was stomping around the house bitterly bemoaning the recent death of Johnny's wife and partner June Carter Cash. "His days are numbered," he proclaims. "The Dexedrine addiction and Parkinson's were hard enough - he's got nothing to live for now. We should be putting all of our resources into finding him a new, suitable mate - and fast - otherwise the soul of country music could well sink into the quagmire of commercial radio for the last time."

(too late.)

Yet even if we were to ignore the occupation of Iraq and the ongoing dismantling of the US Constitution, exclusively diverting our energies instead towards addressing this emergency, where in the whole world could a suitable counterpart be found for such an obstinate, blazing, legendary, notorious son of a ... gun? This would be no mere trifle like the celebrity-music pairings of Britney Spears and Fred Durst or Diana Krall and Elvis Costello - to suitably replace June would take some hitherto unimagined conjunction on the scale of John and Yoko.

Singer-songwriter Bernstein, aka Dan Bern, makes such matchmaking his business - practically his bread-and-butter, following up his hit Marilyn (Monroe should have married Henry Miller) with this piece of (rare these days) Gallo-American goodwill. Tragically cruel tricks of time have rendered this kinky suggestion unfeasible, but it's unlikely that any other proposal will ever top it for bizarre and delightful juxtaposed imageries.

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