Kinky Friedman — a witty man for all seasons 

He might not be a superstar celebrity, but — at a droll, spry-witted 65 — Texas troubadour Kinky Friedman is certainly a master of self-promotion. After trying his hand at country in the late ’70s (with signature sendups like “They Ain’t Making Jews Like Jesus Anymore”), he began penning mystery novels, featuring a Yiddish country-singer-turned-detective named — what else? — Kinky Friedman. Recently, he also ran for governor of Texas, twice, on the platform of ‘How Hard Could It Be?’, and collected his wry philosophies in the volume “What Would Kinky Do?” His new music and spoken-word tour arrives in San Francisco on Friday.

So you’re actually giving up politics for good? I’m not tired of ’em, but I’ve come to the conclusion that we need a new law that says that nobody from Harvard or Yale or the state of Texas can run for president. We have to let the rest of the country see if they can make it on their own. I’ve also suggested limiting all elected officials to two terms — one in office and one in prison. So my definition still stands — “poly” means more than one, and “ticks” are blood-sucking parasites.

How are your two dogs, Brownie and Chumley? They’re great. They’re all that’s left — the last of the Friedmans. And right now we’re doing a lot with this Utopia Animal Rescue Ranch. Utopia’s been running for 12 years. We started it in Utopia, Texas, but the neighbors came with pitchforks, so we moved it here 10 years ago.

And you even have your own brand of cigars? I do! KFC — Kinky Friedman Cigars! Made in Honduras. I think we’ll have some available on this tour. We’ll also, of course, have books for signing after the show, like the one I’ll probably be reading from, “Heroes Of A Texas Childhood.” I’ll sign anything but bad legislation.

So Texas hasn’t seceded yet, like Gov. Rick Perry discussed? I’ve got what I think is the ultimate piece on Rick Perry coming out in the next issue of Texas Monthly, him and his opponent Bill White, called “The lesser of two boll weevils.” And when I die, I’m gonna be cremated and my ashes are gonna be thrown in Rick Perry’s hair.

Have you written new songs for this tour? Of course not! I’ve churned out — uhh, I mean carefully crafted — 29 books. And there’s a new play called “Becoming Kinky” by Ted Swindley, with a young, middle-aged and older Kinky, drawing from all my books and songs. I’ve seen the script, and it’s funny as hell!

 

IF YOU GO

Kinky Friedman

When: 9 p.m. Friday

Where: Great American Music Hall, 859 O’Farrell St., San Francisco

Tickets: $30

Contact: www.gamhtickets.com

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Staff Report

Staff Report

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A daily newspaper covering San Francisco, San Mateo County and serving Alameda, Marin and Santa Clara counties.
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