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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Nov. 5, 1979)
mondav, november 5, 1979
By Casey McCabe .
Leo Kottke is as much at home with the strings of his
guitar as most of us are tying Our shoelaces. One never
doubts that Kottke knows exactly what he is doing. On
the guitar, that is.
The highly respected guitarist made his fourth
appearance in Lincoln Friday night to an appreciative
crowd at ODonnell Auditorium. Between his unfinished
narrations and dreary -eyed, laid-back banter with the
crowd, Kottke would shake himself out of his delirium to
show the fine concert capabilities of one man and his
Opening the show, as he did for Kottke 's last Lincoln
appearance, was local juggler Jek Kelly. Preparing the
audience for what was to come, Kelly warned that if any
uses crowd, vocals lacking
of his juggling apparatus were to fall on the floor, the
blame must be placed on Sir Isaac Newton.
But the crowd didn't seem to care if an object slipped
out of his reach, for Kelly's fine stage presence and his
handling of such varied juggling props as flaming Indian
clubs, Bowie "knives, a bowling ball and a rubber
artichoke, provided a unique and entertaining opening act.
Kottke entered the stage looking both shy and
mischievous. Without a word he opened the show with his
12-string guitar and an acoustic cover of Jefferson
Airplane's "Embryonic Journey."
FOLLOWING THE APPLAUSE, Kottke apologized
and then launched into a lengthy tuning session with the
hard-to-tune 12-string.-He described the difficulty in
getting the perfect sound out of the instrument "like
almost being able to sneeze."
But when he got down to performing a song, Kottke's
face gained intensity. His fingers controlled the guitar and
moved up and down the neck like a crazed spider. He
changed tempo and volume with incredibly smooth
Touching on only a fragment of his repertoire, Kottke
nevertheless hit on a number of crowd pleasers. His music
is hard to define, because besides having an admirable
following and long list of albums, Kottke's music has
appeared everywhere from television sermonettes, to the
But he does have a certain style that is distinctively his
own. Most often it is associated with his use of a finger
slide. Indeed, the "mere slipping of the "device on to his
finger brought applause from the crowd.
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. Photo by Mark Billinjjsley
Guitarist Leo Kottke performed before an appreciative crowd Friday at Lincoln's O'Donhell Auditorium.
And Kottke's insights into his songs always prove
enlightening. He described "A Little Snow Starts to Fall
Again," as accompanying a movie where a man skiis down
a snowless mountain, and told the crowd that "Learning
The Game" had always reminded him of "a canal full of
HE PERFORMED PART of the souiidtrack he
provided for Terrence Mallick's "Days of Heaven,"
prefacing it with some background to the movie, which
Kottke interpreted as being about "three people from
Chicago who go to harvest winter wheat in Texas to cheer
'UP." , . .
He rounded out the evening with his classical six -string,
and some beautiful finger work. He was brought back for
an encore of "Jesus, Joy of Man's Desiring" by Bach.
Whether Kottke is shy of his voice , or just feels it may
distract from his guitar, he disappointingly avoided much
of his vocal work. His deep, rich voice did deliver two of
the night's best moments on "Eight Miles High" and his
highly ironic signature song, "Pamela Brown."
But Kottke is first and foremost a guitarist , and he left '
no doubt Friday night as to his outstanding capabilities
with the instrument.
Retired NATO chiefs book is picture of future war
By Scott Kleager
Multi-leveled, from descriptions of the smallest caliber
round to accounts of the largest of the land, air and naval
forces involved, General Sir John Hackett's The Third
World War August 1985 is a new novel that tells nearly
everything anyone would care to know about the charac
teristics of a third global war. The work could be called a
factually-based historical fiction. It also could be called a
horrifyingly well-written fantasy, too, but fantasy it is
In fact, because of the author's experience, military
professionalism and his seemingly unending knowledge of
modern weaponry, the novel is as real as a slap in the face.
General Sir John Hackett is retired commander of the
Northern Army Group in NATO as Commander-in-Chief
of the British Army of the Rhine. He knows his stuff and
this book is proof of it.
IIS BEGINS BY looking back at the military, political
and economic situation in the countries of the NATO
alliance and the Warsaw Pact countries in 1978. Connect
ing these two super-powers with their respective policies
regarding the Middle East and Africa, Hackett relates that
during 1978-1985 the NATO alliance nations experience a
resureence in the fear of the Soviet Union felt in the
1950s. This causes Increases in military spending and an
upgrading of the NATO forces and equipment in general.
"Thus, in the late 1970s, the overhauling of the NATO
defenses so long sorely needed was put into train at last
. , , and was not in the event enough wholly to deter the
Soviet Union. But it happened, and was. to prove the
Then, coupling the Kremlin's realization that an im
proved NATO would only get better in time with actual
insurrection in Poland and East Germany, the invasion of
West Germany and the destruction of the Western
Alliance is put into action by the USSR.
Things begin to happen: the President of Egypt is
assassinated by left-wing extremists , and a new Soviet
backed government is formed. This is immediately follow
ed by Egypt's military takeover of Iraq and Saudi Arabia,
putting into the hands of the Russians the vast oil fields
there. A Soviet submarine sinks an Iranian transport, an
American intelligence-gathering ship is attacked by the
Russians, the President of Mexico is assassinated by
communists and in East Berlin a bloody riot is witnessed
bv a worldwide television audience. Part of Yugoslavia de
clares independence and the Red Army invades that
country from the east; the United States responds militar
ily and the war has begun.
THE NOVEL, though extremely competent and
documented to the point of being overly technic 1, is too
optimistic in several respects. To begin with, one only has
to look around to see that less and less people are really
afraid of Soviet intentions-only a pocketful of politicians
and the military. Our Democratic congress seems to have :
no intentions of drastically increasing military spending or
reinstituting the draft.
Secondly, in the novel, Iran is still ruled by the Shah
and his henchmen and is, therefore, still pro-western.
Thirdly, the Warsaw Pact alliance, after only minor mili
tary movements against it and two isolated insurrections,
Finally, and most unbelieveably, only two nuclear
strikes are precipitated during the entire war. These four
situations on which much of the novel depends appears to
be unrealistically hopeful and, in Iran's case, either
written before the Shah's abdication or a miscalculation
by the author.
STYLISTICALLY, WHAT can one say about a novel
written in the mold of a historical text book, except that
it's as dry as this review and in most cases much more
arid. It's hard reading and long, but for those who enjoy
war games and stories, it will probably move quickly.
All in all, the novel is not fun reading. The advances in
modern warfare and the power and speed possessed by
just about everyone these days make for a frightening turn
of the page. But Hackett consoles the obviously distressed
reader by making the war rather short and comparatively
mild in destructive consequences.
"Kassel, Nurnberg and Munchen had all suffered, and
the great cities of the Rhineland had not been spared,
although the spire of Koln cathedral had again surprisingly
survived." No cities in the United States had been
. touched, which, as was reiterated before, seems highly
unlikely in the face of the novel's protrayal of the condi
tions of the military.
But, if you enioy watching Rat Patrol on television and
yearn for replays of DDav on the late show, then read
this novel. On the other hand, if you gave up hunting
pheasants for moral reasons, this novel may make you
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