One of the one hundred thousand things that I love about Matt is that he’s just real simple. Actually, that’s not right at all. He’s REALLY complex. We most always come to the same conclusion at any juncture, but he most definitely takes a unique route getting there. And I love that about him, too.
It’s more like this: he likes very simple things, and not too many of them. Leave him to his element with his old nappy flat pillow that I am dying to throw away, a 3-pack of Hanes white boxers, an endless supply of 2% milk, some Gold Bond and hair gel from Rite-Aid, and he would be just fine forever. He wouldn’t even need his guitar. He would just make and play the music in his mind.
Along with the above generic essentials, he has a pretty tight curation of things that make him go woo and a dogmatic regimen of their uses.
Welcome to the world of my Matt. It’s a wild one.
1. I hate having nice sunglasses because when you lose them you wanna curl up in a ball and cry. But I sure became a fancy frame convert when Carrie got me the Persol 714s for my birthday a couple of years ago. Made famous by Steve McQueen, they are the best looking pair of sunglasses a man or woman can buy.
2. If any of you are D’Angelo fans, you already know the drama that has surrounded him over the last 12 years. If there is one record that single-handedly changed my life, it’s Voodoo. R&B fan or not, take a listen and tell me he’s not a genius!
3. I have always wanted a vintage deck jacket. Only problem is they’re itchy and they don’t fit very well. So, we made one instead. Horse blanket lined with a slimmer fit – this is what you will see me in all winter long. At long last, Decker is available for pre-order today.
4. Mas Tacos is probably the greatest thing that ever happened to Nashville. Have you ever had the tortilla soup? It’s RIDICULOUS! If you go to the brick and mortar for lunch, order one to eat there and an extra to take home.
5. The law in Tennessee requires you to wear a helmet when riding a motorcycle. I personally think this is a good thing, so having a cool and comfortable lid is a must. I took a vintage Buco helmet from the 70s and relined it with a Biltwell liner. A vintage look with comfortable lining is the perfect combo.
6. “The Kingston” by Himel Brothers is hands down the best fitting café jacket I have ever put on. I knew I struck gold with this one when my boys asked me, “Where did you get that?”
7. imogene + willie iPad case. We have an iPad, but never use it. But if you use yours, it needs a case! We just made a batch of cases from some old oil cloth that we had left over from last year’s oil cloth Willies. Available now in the shop, and I think next week online.
8. Rolex Air King from 1961. As you might have figured out by now, I really only like one of everything… other than motorcycles and 4 pairs of jeans. Timepieces are another category where I’ve broken my own rule, though. In my old watch box by my bed, I have an old rubber diving watch, a circa 1960s Bulova that Carrie gave me on our wedding day, and this 1961 Air King that she gave me for our 5th wedding anniversary.
9. Deerskin riding gloves. So comfortable and when they get wet they don’t shrink.
10. Carrie’s brother Bart gave me two vintage belts for my 30th birthday. One disappeared and the other is wrapped around my Willies at all times. I love this belt for life, and never really want another.
11. I’m not a huge “printed” fabric person, so about 5 years ago, I decided to go all white boxer shorts. I know no one sees them except Carrie, but something about knowing they’re white makes me happy. Weirdo.
12. Growing up, I never was a huge Powell and Peralta fan. I was more into indie skate labels like Skull Skates and Santa Monica Airlines, but the talent that P&P had on their team is undeniable. Super stoked to watch Bones Brigade, the new documentary that comes out this fall.
13. For my 37th birthday, my best friend from grade school got me a signed copy of To Kill A Mockingbird. I mean, come on!
14. Got Milk? I have a glass with dinner every night, and then sleepwalk to the fridge around 3 am to get a swig.
15. I hated Lale. She was the worst dog on the planet. When Carrie and I started dating back in ’03, this crazy dog was jumping through glass windows, barking until her bark collar burned through her larynx and eating full boxes of de-con… and surviving. Carrie tried to tell me that Lale was just emotionally disturbed, because when she and Lale moved back to the states from Turkey, the turbulence she experienced all cooped up in the cargo made her crazy. I knew her only chance was to get some discipline in her life, so I started training her. My hate was replaced with a lot of love little by little. She’s my girl. I love her so much.
16. I love me some cheap shit hair pomade from Rite-Aid. As of late, it’s often sold out, so I traipse to all 1000 Walgreens or Rite-Aids around town and buy them out. But no more… it’s discontinued! My barber Mic Fox convinced me to switch to Baxter of California’s Clay Pomade. We carry it at the shop.
17. Gold Bond Medicated Powder. What can I say, I was a little late to the fresh-feeling game, now I can’t leave home without it. Too much info?
18. Wood Carving tools. When I was in art school, my painting classes didn’t allow me the opportunity to take printmaking classes. So I went rogue a few years back and started making woodblock prints – hands down my favorite past time.
19. My Willies. What can I say? You might be surprised that I only have 4 Willies in my closet. I get a fresh pair only once a year.
20. Inserts from The Walking Company. If you have a bad back like myself, these will change your life… for real.
21. HTC Engineer Boots. The first time I saw these boots I was blown away. The stitching, the leather… everything is perfect. I hate breaking in a new pair of boots but these just seem so worth it.
22. Ancient Japanese indigo textile. Every man needs just one scarf. And he doesn’t even need that unless it’s good. I never have found one where the length and width were just right, until I found this old textile from our friend Bob Melet, at Melet Merchantile in NYC. I wear it every day starting around October 1, and then retire it at end of winter.
23. Robert Rauschenberg: A Retrospective. Another gift. This one from an old girlfriend from art school in Cincy. She couldn’t afford to eat, much less buy me this book. I think it was 100 bucks back then. Today, it’s worth $1500. Rauschenberg is the first American artist I fell in love with. Until I studied him, I thought that all of the great masters were French. He was the artist that I identified with, realizing I could be an artist too, not just dream of being an artist.
24. 1950s Sherwood Deluxe. A good friend called me and said he had found me the perfect acoustic guitar on Craigslist. When we went to pick it up, the guitar was missing everything, but my friend told me it would be worth it in the end. One year later, after a rebuild: best damn guitar I’ve ever played. Every night after I brush my teeth, I do 8 sun salutations and then sit on the end of the bed and play before we hit the sack. Thanks, Dan.
25. 1967 BMW R69S. All I can say is if you haven’t ridden a vintage BMW, don’t. I want them all to myself.
26. Get cha roll on! I love this suitcase from Brookstone. It rolls on 4 wheels. There is literally nothing worse than a traveling bag that sucks!