John Artis, Convicted With Rubin (Hurricane) Carter, Dies at 75
(too old to reply)
Matthew Kruk
2021-11-13 04:36:51 UTC
He was the "forgotten man" in the triple murder case that was eventually
overturned and that exposed flaws in the criminal justice system.

2021-11-13 09:47:09 UTC
It's actually nowadays a QUADRUPLE-murder case, as one of the survivors eventually succumbed to his wounds about a decade later.

And to his credit, while Dylan has never repudiated his song which propelled the legal effort to overturn the late Carter's TWO jury-convictions, the recording artist DID at least cease performing the tune at his concerts after concluding the twin Rolling Thunder Revue tours during fall 1975 and the following spring.

While the released recording of "Hurricane" heard by the public on his 1976 album "Desire" is certainly creditable, it is also no great shakes when it comes to Dylanesque vocalizing. Whereas the ORIGINAL studio take of "Hurricane" (its audio these days available on YouTube) featuring much slower drumming, exquisite harp breaks and a repeatedly-soaring lead vocal stands as one of Dylan two or three dozen most remarkable achievements EVER...yet had to be deleted by Columbia Records brass from "Desire" in favor of that familiar rushed, hugely-inferior rendition due to some libelous lyrics in Dylan's original drafts of the lengthy song.

Not sure how tall the late John Artis was, but the onetime middle-weight contender Carter was rather short in stature, as I was surprised to learn when I met then-long-freed boxer (and his literary agent) at a public appearance in Chicago in 1999, having abandoned his shave-head look for either a [regrown] coif or a toupee.

* All of which never minds the GARGANTUAN fact that Carter was guilty as sin, as the several websites covering the case will make clear to anyone who prefers to get their news coverage from journalists, rather than an imaginative singer/songwriter/performer who can out-rhyme just about anyone but seldom troubles himself with lyrical factuality.**
** Excepting, of course, in his 2021 epic "Murder Most Foul", that ponderous 17-minute detailing of Dallas 1963, where the usually-fact-loose visionary even made it a point to get correct the local time of LBJ's oath-of-office at Love Field aboard Air Force One!
2021-11-13 11:13:15 UTC

I met up with The Hurricane in person in downtown Chicago on a snowy Monday evening, January 17, 2000, not as misremembered in 1999.

I neglected to single-asterisk the conclusion of the third paragraph, i.e., "...of the lengthy song.*"

Most conspicuously, I should have described the late defendant as legally not guilty, as is anyone whose conviction is overturned on appeal on any grounds whatsoever, factual, procedural or otherwise.

However, like a certain onetime Buffalo Bills Hall of Famer running back and Hertz spokesman knows first-hand, being declared judicially not guilty ain't the same as anyone necessarily believing he didn't in fact DO it. Orthanal James Simpson did it West Los Angeles on Sunday, June 12, 1994, and a generation earlier Ruben Carter and John Artis did it late Thursday night in Paterson, New Jersey on Friday morning, June 17, 1966.

2021-11-13 11:24:26 UTC
Okay, it's spelled Rubin Carter (not Ruben).

And it's Orenthal Simpson (not Orthanal [?!?*] ).

I'd add, "So shoot me!"--but one of those killers is still alive.

* Gotta start enlarging the text for these aging eyes!