Every once in awhile when I play out, somebody will ask me to do more of my own songs. I always tell them I'm not interested in writing songs when there are so many other great songs out there to sing. We live in a time when we are blessed with so many magnificent songwriters. That Zevon is one of the best is unquestioned, but if anybody needed convincing, Enjoy Every Sandwich ought to do the trick.
Much of rock music is based on specific riffs; much of what is most memorable are specific performances. Having spent thirty-five years working my way through other people's songs, trying to get past the original performance and figure out a way to make the song my own, I've come across many, many cases where the song, much as I've loved it, falls apart when you try to take it out of its original arrangement and range. It may be a great track -- but it turns out it's not really a great song.
Zevon wrote great songs, and on Enjoy Every Sandwich, his friends and admirers give them great performances. Springsteen slows down "My Ride's Here" and caresses every word & phrase, filling it with the poignancy of leaving that is a distinctly different twist from Zevon's own sardonic version. And when Jorge Calderon, his longtime musical partner and producer, closes the album with "Keep Me In Your Heart", he turns it from the wistfulness of Zevon's own personal plea to his loved ones to a promise back to him from all of those who cared about him that he will not be forgotten. These songs will go on.