The Legend of the Chili Pepper

In the late 1600’s most of Spain and certain parts of Latin America were under the rule of the great leader King Chiliano Poblano. King Poblano had two great passions in life: jazz and food. He was also known far and wide as a great orator. One day, while on a speaking tour of his kingdom, he awoke to find that he could not talk. In an effort to not disappoint his subjects, King Poblano summoned the court jazz composer to create a head chart that the Kingdom Quintet could perform at the daily rally. “Chili Pepper Got Your Tongue” instantly became the most requested number for all jobbing bands in the Kingdom.

On this same trip, King Poblano would invariably stop at one of two types of places for lunch. If the choice was a hot dog stand (like Golda’s Hot Dogs, but that’s another story), the order was always for a regular dog with “No Peppers, No Tomatoes”. If it was a chili stand, the order was always for “2 Alarm Chili Pepper”. The court jazz composer quickly created tunes reflecting this pattern and all jobbing musicians were forced to learn these melodies in order to retain employment.

Upon his return from this all conquering trip, King Poblano went on a date with one of the most beautiful maidens in his entire Kingdom. She was of course smitten with his charm, grace, wit and good taste. King Poblano could not have cared less. This, of course, led to more musical creations from court jazz composer. First came “Romancing The Chili Pepper”. Then, as the King continued to try evade the pursuing maiden, “Mask of The Chili Pepper” was created. When the King finally succeeded in ditching his follower, the court jazz composer came through with “The Chili Pepper That Got Away”. The court jazz composer’s ASCAP royalties soared to new levels.

All seemed good. Then came the great world financial crisis of 1697. Much of King Poblano’s wealth vanished. But all was not lost in that the court jazz composer was able to transform tragedy into music with the creation of “Pop Goes the Chili Pepper”. And in recognition of the King’s diminished net worth, he reasoned that the King’s 401K would now be referred to as “Chili Pepper 101”.

Many thought the King’s reign was over. Some thought he was dead, although there were scattered reported sightings. Most of these were at night. Of course, our fearless court jazz composer, now on welfare, instantly created “Night of the Living Chili Pepper”. The rumor then started, and was soon confirmed, that King Poblano’s estranged cousin Cayenne was coming to stake claim to the entire kingdom. War broke out. The court jazz composer again responded, this time with “When Chili Peppers Collide”. But the King held his ground and Cayenne was defeated. The court jazz composer celebrated the event with “Revenge of the Chili Pepper”. His royalties became so great that he was heard chanting “I Got Chili Pepper” wherever he went. Many people were outraged and filed formal complaints. To all of plaintiffs the King had only one response: “Holy Habanero!”

– Doug Beach