Friday, August 15, 2008

Papa Jack -- Thanks for the Threads

Jack Weil, America's oldest living CEO, passed away on Wednesday . . . at the ripe old age of 107. He founded Rockmount Ranch Wear in 1946.

When it comes to cars, cameras, toothpaste, and most other consumer goods, I've never had much brand loyalty. Jack Weil's Rockmount shirts are the exception. When I put one on, I'm ready -- at least in my own mind -- to rock.

Most of the calendar year, I'm a lawyer. As a result, I have way too many lawyer clothes in my closet. They weren't fun to buy and they are not fun to wear. Every now and then, I get to shed the lawyer skin (no snake jokes, please) and lead my bar band. For those occasions, I keep a small section of music clothes in my closet. Those were fun to buy and they're also fun to wear. Most of those duds came from Jack Weil's company.

Elvis had Bernard Lansky; Gram Parsons had Nudie Cohen. Legends all.

But even without the talent or the checking accounts of Elvis and Gram (both of whom I've managed to outlive), I look forward to playing tavern gigs in Jack Weil's Rockmount shirts for a long time. Good Lord willing and the creek don't rise, I hope to be doing it when I turn 107.

Rest in peace, Papa Jack.

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