Everyday Icon: Van

I first met Van a couple of years ago, while sharing time at local newsprint outfit.  Van has, since first handshake, been one of those guys that just exudes ‘cool.’  Blush as he may, Van doesn’t abide by ‘style.’  He creates it.

As Fine Times finds its way, we want to recognize those that ‘create style.’

Recently we had the chance to ask Van a couple of questions, in between his itunes playing the likes of Robert Plant and Allison Krauss, Liam Finn or Tim Buckley.

Van. On a ten speed. Then. (in corduroy)

FT:  What’s your single favorite thing to wear?

Van: Brown corduroy jackets.  I bought my first one at 17 and wore it until it fell apart at the end of college.  I’ve been wearing them ever since.  The current version is from Banana Republic maybe 6-7 years ago.  Red Wings and western shirts are a close second.

FT:  Who’s your favorite artist that you’ve seen live?

Van: Different shows for different reasons. My first concert was The Rolling Stones in Shreveport, Louisiana. 1965, fourth row seats… a good beginning. Also the Stones in Ft. Worth, 1972 Exile tour. Joni Mitchell, 1974 in Austin, her peak for me. And The Clash at the Palladium (on NW Hwy, not the same place as now) with Joe Ely opening, Dallas 1979. Or the Dandy Warhols at Trees, a great show…

Van. Then. (in corduroy)

… I have never understood why they aren’t megastars. Armadillo World Headquarters on any given night in the early 70s.

FT: And the best venue to see a show?

Van: Probably the Lakewood Theater and the Granada, close to home and relatively hassle-free parking etc. The best new venue in Dallas is the Winspear Opera House. Beautiful building, great sound.

FT: What keeps you and your sweetheart together? (and how long?)

Van: My somewhat joking answer has been that I find my wife endlessly fascinating, but I think that may be the real answer. We met early in college but were always with other people until our last year when we were at a party and it all clicked. She’s exactly the sort of woman I find most attractive: smart, funny, hot, cool, stylish. We have been together for 35 years, married for 27.

FT: Who inspires you?

Van: Artists, writers, musicians that have a singular, original point of view. I loved Andy Warhol as a kid, like him even more now. You have seen his work for so long that it is hard to remember how groundbreaking it was at the time. Gram Parsons, Nick Drake, Jack Keroauc, Ken Kesey, Keith Haring, early Larry McMurtry, their work is still very fresh to me.

I seen Van a handful of times over the last few months.  Carrying his custom leather portfolio filled with sketches, scribbles and side notes of artistic thoughts, it’s a pleasure to observe someone like Van.  Van is an everyday icon.

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  1. June 9th, 2010

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