The book Martin Eden by Jack London


“The book Martin Eden by Jack London inspired me to write the song because it reminded me of Elliott Smith: it’s a story about a writer who becomes famous and disenchanted at the same time. It’s part of me, too: I had begun to draw the line. When we bought the Short Stop, I was one of the bartenders for the first year; I worked Monday nights, and Elliott lived up the street. It became a thing: Elliott and I would hang when no one was there, so Elliott could be in peace.

I spent a lot of Mondays with Elliott – I’d close the bar, and we’d stay and listen to the jukebox and just kick it; at one point, we had five Beatles records in the jukebox, and I give him full credit for that. He certainly loved the Beatles, and knew a lot about them: he was fun to talk music with – just a really kind, intelligent, beautiful cat. I knew him for only a short time, but he was one of the most interesting people I’d ever met. I’d met him years before for the first time at Satyricon in Portland, when he was in Heatmiser. I lost touch with him; honestly, his stardom kinda crept up on me. I wasn’t really paying attention, but when I peeked back out, Elliott was already a star – he was on the Oscars! I had stopped playing music and he was a big reason why I started playing again: I had receded, and he was very encouraging.”

Greg Dulli


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