A Farewell Anthem for Bob Norman

The best journalists actually apply their years of reporting, research, and interviews to the ultimate beat: life. And one man who embodies that charge is our departing columnist, Bob Norman.

I've been fortunate enough to discuss topics fit for the Daily Pulp with Bob, but he's equally eager to shift the focus over to family, sports, and the best aspects of Kentucky. We've had quite a few conversations about musicians too.

Below, I have embedded the song that a wild-eyed Bob once described to me with his scratchy voice rising to thunder. (The song is even more precious to him than the coin of pure silver once offered to me to settle a bar tab.) Hearing him break down the emotions, textures, and power of Bruce Springsteen performing "The Ghost of Tom Joad" with Tom Morello (Rage Against the Machine) at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ceremony in 2009 was just as electrifying as the song itself.

Even if you have seen this before, please watch it again.

It should come as no surprise that he loves Springsteen and Morello. Here are two men capable of touching on our country's less-than-sunny realities while artfully radiating hope from within the message. Bob effused about Morello's solo in particular here. It's an epic squall of a poem that you hope never ends.

Now that Bob Norman's tenure with New Times is coming to a close, it's an opportunity to thank him for being a Tsunami-sized inspiration for everyone in our newsroom. Here's a man who is accomplished and respected in the field for his hard work and keen intellect -- but also because he understands that living well is also about the people in your life. Best of luck, Bob!

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Reed Fischer
Contact: Reed Fischer