Jackson Browne and “Doctor, My Eyes”

LORELAI: And what’s with Jackson Browne making the list?

LANE: Ah, see, cool people know that he’s more than a mellow hippie-dippy folkie, that he actually wrote some of Nico’s best songs and was in fact her lover before he bored us with “Doctor, My Eyes.” That will separate the poseurs from the non-poseurs.

Clyde Jackson Browne (born 1948), musician, songwriter, and political activist. A precocious teenaged songwriter from Los Angeles in the 1960s, he had his first success writing songs for others. As a sixteen-year-old, he wrote “These Days” for the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, which became a minor hit for German singer Nico, previously mentioned as one of Lane’s music idols, in 1967. After moving to Greenwich Village, he backed Nico, and they were romantically involved. He was a significant contributor to her debut album, Chelsea Girl, writing and playing guitar on several of the songs.

Jackson Browne’s self-titled debut album came out in 1972, and this includes the track “Doctor, My Eyes”, an upbeat-sounding track about being world-weary. It was a surprise hit, reaching #8 on the US charts, and most popular in Canada at #4. It’s become one of his concert mainstays, but Lane seems to regard his debut album as the start of Browne being “boring”!

Jackson Browne continued to have successful albums, with his signature work being 1977’s Running On Empty, peaking at #3, and with the title track reaching #11 in the US (#4 in Canada). His success continued through the 1980s, and his most recent album is Downhill from Everywhere (2021). He is regarded as one of the greatest songwriters of all time.

Note that Lane has no problems telling Lorelai that she has been lumped in with the uncool “poseurs” for not knowing about Jackson Browne and Nico – even though Lorelai has helped form many of Lane’s musical tastes (this seems very believable from a teenager). Viewers may find it amusing that Lane sees herself as having the ability to separate the poseurs from the non-poseurs, considering she’s quite the musical poseur herself.

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