For a character.
Country music star Brad Paisley is either an idiot or a genius. If he wrote the song "Accidental Racist" to stir a whirlwind of (mostly bad) publicity, he's a genius. But the negative cultural consensus strongly suggests he should have never been dumb enough to try to write a racial-harmony song.
Er, no. At least not by my lights. But maybe the country singer and the first-term senator are contenders for that title according to the attorney general of the United States, Eric Holder.
Some twenty years ago, there was a rough-looking man who used to frequent the Mississippi bars where I once made my living playing music in acoustic duos and trios. I remember him because he always stood in the back and applauded enthusiastically. He would even shout out words of encouragement in between requests. I remember that he liked the Allman Brothers and wished we would play more of their songs.
About a decade before he began a Nashville recording career that has included five platinum albums, Collin Raye was singing at a nightclub in Beaverton, Ore., when he experienced something he would later recognize as an act of Providence.