As the counter-cultural zeigeist slips ever further into pre-packaged crapola, the Ruane's of the world do their slow fade which, as Neil Young might say, is not preferable to burning out or in Bill's case, blazing out. I'd trade a thousand manufactured arbiters of non-taste spewing forth their predictable opinions for one crazy ole Billy Ruane. Maybe he stumbled it like he mumbled it as opposed to walking and talking it, but so what? Motherfucker was alive--how many other supposed music lovers can you apply that simple adjective to?
Above: a series of mixtapes given to Todd Phillips (Bullet LaVolta, Juliana Hatfield 3) by Billy Ruane. Click to enlarge.
TRACK LISTING OF A MIXTAPE GIVEN BY BILLY RUANE TO SONYA KOLOWRAT, FORMER MIDDLE EAST EMPLOYEE AND CURRENT BEGGARS LABEL GROUP SENIOR PUBLICIST
Casino Royale | Tijuana Brass
Do Me Good, Baby | Abbe Lane
...Excuse Me, Mister | Gale Garnett
Comfort me with Apples | India Adams
Softly, as in a Morning Sunrise | Helen Merrill
I Fall In Love Too Easily | Sammy Davis, Jr.
I Was Telling Her About You | Johnny Mathis
Just for the Fun of It | Nat "King" Cole
I'm Just A Country Boy | Harry Belafonte
Here I'll Stay | Sammy Davis, Jr.
Anytime | Brenda Lee
Sittin' Pretty | Bobbie Gentry
God Knows, I Love You | Nancy Sinatra
I'm So Much In Love With You | Vicki Carr
Lulu's Back in Town | George Shearing
(You Don't Know) How Glad I Am | Sandie Shaw
What's a Matter, Baby? | Timi Yuro
I've Got A Notion | Mary Wells
Nothing Rhymed | Tom Jones
Quiet Nights (Corcovado) | Engelbert Humperdinck
Girl, You're Gonna Hurt Yourself | Frankie Valli
Woman, Woman | Robert Goulet
All of Nothing at All | Anthony Newley
Impossible | Troy Cory
24 Hours Fom Tulsa | Vince Hill
I Let Go Completely | Jackie de Shannon
Slowly | Ann-Margaret
CYNTHIA VON BUHLER: He was a dear friend of mine. We met when we were both voted "best personality" by The Noise back in 2000. He couldn't believe that I couldn't drive so he gave me driving lessons and a car. He forced me to learn. I got my license, but I didn't continue to drive until eight years later. He bought many of my paintings and gave them away to friends and family members. One of them, Miss Ann Thrope, is now in the collection of the Staten Island Museum thanks to a "liberation" by Billy. He wanted my art seen by as many people as possible. When his father passed away Billy sent me a painting from his inheritance. It is an oil painting of a young girl holding a dove. I raise doves. He was so thoughtful. It hangs in my dining room and I cherish it. I invited Billy to my recent birthday party, but I didn't hear back from him. He must have been in a bad place in his mind. I always worried about his heart with all that caffeine he took. He put Balzac to shame! I will miss Billy. This world lost a beautiful, loving person.