Plow on Boy

My writing career was less than six months old in 1995 and things were not going well.

I’d botched an interview with Jim Carroll. I’d choked a brief encounter with Hunter S. Thompson. I quit my job at Cincinnati CityBeat, a local weekly where I was writing news. Instead, I wanted to write features. I wanted to tell stories.

So I did. Quitting that job made all the difference in my life. But one of the luckiest finds was a local Cincinnati band, Plow on Boy.

As it happened, I worked with the lead singer, Niki Buehrig (she’s Niki Dakota now), at the York Street Cafe in Covington. This was beneficial for two reasons:

  • She’s one of two songwriters in my life who have moved me; and
  • Her band was voted Band of the Year in 1995.

Since I worked with her, she asked the other weekly in town — Everybody’s News — to let me write their profile.  I still have it…down in Texas. But that’s not important now.

What’s important is this. Her song, “Pastoral,” has haunted me since the first time I heard it 15 years ago. How haunted? When I lost the only version I had in 2000, I freaked out and tracked down her old bassist Mike when I was in Cincinnati and had him burn me several copies of their old work.

I’ve lost touch with the group – Niki, Chris, Mike and Toby, mostly. I do catch up with them every once in awhile. But Niki’s words, the band’s melodies, and “Pastoral” follow me.

Now, hopefully, it will follow you. With an extra bonus track, “O.K. Then,” just for you.

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