S.E. Rogie - Please Go Easy With Me
Before the lovely lilting lullabies of S.E. Rogie entered my life, wine and palms only evoked images of lonely, drunken self-abuse - or as I call it, Lonely Drunken Self-Abuse Fridays. However, ‘palm wine music’ is actually a whole genre of ambling, vaguely Trinadadian-by way of-West Africa music, named after booze made from the sap of palm trees - palm wine. A delightful-sounding tincture I’ve never had the personal pleasure of trying as I value my eyesight and have higher standards (THUNDERBIRD OR GTFO), palm wine was often imbibed at gatherings where fellas would ululate and fiddle with acoustic guitars. So now, when I think of palm wine, I think of drunk folks and palm trees, which just makes me think of Nick Nolte and the smell of wet terrycloth. Just thought I’d pop the cap on my brains and let you have a look around.
S.E. Rogie, born Sooliman Ernest Rogers, found quite a bit of notoriety outside of his native Sierra Leone, and as Leo DiCaprio might quip while squinting, he achieved heightened status and the accompanying ‘bling bling’ despite coming from a background steeped in ‘bling bang’. Rogie moved from Africa to the San Francisco Bay area in 1973, and during that time he was the recipient of numerous awards - including recognition from the United States Congress & Senate for his ‘contributions to the American way of life’. 1970’s America, history’s ill-remembered, puke-soaked societal urinal, briefly abandoned apple pie and baseball as the embodiment of American values and embraced ‘portuguese guitars’, ‘fermented palm tree oil’ and ‘Nick Nolte / wet terrycloth’ as their new cultural sigils, sort of like the time you were Buddhist for a bit after you came back from Thailand, Ward.
Rogie’s last album, ‘Dead Men Don’t Smoke Marijuana’ was released shortly before his death; cementing in the western lexicon the use of the term ‘Rogie’ as a colloquialism for ‘marijiuana cigarette’. At least by me. Hey, please go easy with me man - I just hit this fat S.E. Rogie and I’m totally bling bangin’.
S.E. Rogie (right). Portuguese guitar, also named S.E. Rogie (left)