The rock musician Warren Zevon (1947-2003) had been diagnosed with lung cancer and made his final appearance on Late Night with David Letterman in a tribute show (no other guests were booked for the hour) on October 30, 2002. Letterman asked Zevon what life was like living with a terminal disease. Zevon stated that he was trying to enjoy life and to “enjoy every sandwich.”
Enjoy Every Sandwich: The Songs of Zarren Zevon was the title of a tribute album released in 2004.
Wikipedia: Warren Zevon
Warren William Zevon (January 24, 1947 – September 7, 2003) was an American rock singer-songwriter and musician noted for weaving his offbeat, sardonic view of life into his music, composing dark, sometimes humorous songs often laced with political or historical themes.
Zevon’s best-known compositions include “Werewolves of London”, “Lawyers, Guns and Money”, “Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner” and “Johnny Strikes Up The Band”, all of which are featured on his 1978 release, Excitable Boy. Other well known Zevon songs include “Accidentally Like a Martyr”, “Mutineer” and “Mohammad’s Radio”.
Along with his own compositions Zevon recorded an occasional cover, including Bob Dylan’s “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door” and Leonard Cohen’s “First We Take Manhattan”. He was a frequent guest on the the David Letterman show.
Cancer, death and The Wind
In interviews, Zevon described a lifelong phobia of doctors and said he seldom received medical assessment. Shortly before playing at the Edmonton Folk Festival in 2002, he started feeling dizzy and developed a chronic cough. After a long period of untreated illness and pain, Zevon was encouraged by his dentist to see a physician; when he did so he was diagnosed with inoperable mesothelioma (a form of cancer associated with exposure to asbestos, and also the same cancer that killed Steve McQueen). Refusing treatments he believed might incapacitate him, Zevon instead began recording his final album. The album, The Wind, includes guest appearances by close friends including Bruce Springsteen, Don Henley, Jackson Browne, Timothy B. Schmit, Joe Walsh, David Lindley, Billy Bob Thornton, Emmylou Harris, Tom Petty, and others. At the request of the music television channel VH1, documentarian Nick Read was given access to the sessions; his cameras documented a man who retained his mordant sense of humor, even as his health was deteriorating over time.
On October 30, 2002, Zevon was featured on the Late Show with David Letterman as the only guest for the entire hour. The band played “I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead” as his introduction. Zevon performed several songs and spoke at length about his illness. Zevon was a frequent guest and occasional substitute bandleader on Letterman’s television shows since Late Night first aired in 1982. He noted, “I may have made a tactical error in not going to a physician for 20 years.” It was during this broadcast that Zevon first offered his oft-quoted insight on facing death: “Enjoy every sandwich.” He also took time to thank Letterman for his years of support, calling him “the best friend my music’s ever had”. For his final song of the evening, and his final public performance, Zevon performed “Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner” at Letterman’s request. In the green room after the show, Zevon presented Letterman with the guitar that he always used on the show, with a single request: “Here, I want you to have this, take good care of it.”
Wikipedia: Enjoy Every Sandwich: Songs of Warren Zevon
Enjoy Every Sandwich: Songs of Warren Zevon is a tribute album released in 2004 to the late Warren Zevon by many famous musicians. It includes two unreleased Zevon songs: “The Wind,” sung by actor Billy Bob Thornton; and “Studebaker,” sung by Warren’s son Jordan Zevon.
The album’s title comes from an interview Zevon did on The Late Show with David Letterman following Zevon’s having been diagnosed with terminal lung cancer. Letterman asked Zevon if there was anything he understood now, facing his own mortality, that he didn’t before. Zevon replied, “Just how much you’re supposed to enjoy every sandwich.”
Wikipedia: Late Show with David Letterman
The Late Show with David Letterman is an American late-night talk show hosted by David Letterman on CBS. The show debuted on August 30, 1993, and is produced by Letterman’s production company, Worldwide Pants Incorporated. The show’s music director and bandleader of the house band, the CBS Orchestra, is Paul Shaffer. The head writers are brothers Justin Stangel and Eric Stangel. The announcer is Alan Kalter, who replaced Bill Wendell in 1995.
(Late Night with David Letterman is broadcast in New York City, at the Ed Sullivan Theater on Broadway between West 53rd and West 54th Streets, at “Big Apple Corner”—ed.)
Warren Zevon’s last Letterman Appearance part 1
February 22, 2008
Part 1 of Zevon’s last Letterman show. Thanks to user wainwright3 for the original.
ZEVON: You know, you put more value in every minute. You do. I always thought I kind of kid that. I always enjoyed myself. But it’s more valuable now. You’re reminded to enjoy every sandwich and every minute and playing with the guys and being with the kids and everything.
Warren Zevon’s last Letterman Appearance Part 2
February 22, 2008
Part 2 of Zevon’s last Letterman appearance. Thanks to user wainwright3 for the original.
LETTERMAN: From your perspective now, do you know something about life and death that maybe I don’t know now?
ZEVON: Not unless I know how much...how much you’re supposed to enjoy every sandwich.
Word Mark ENJOY EVERY SANDWICH
Goods and Services (ABANDONED) IC 025. US 022 039. G & S: Shirts, hats, sweatshirts
Mark Drawing Code (1) TYPED DRAWING
Serial Number 78184109
Filing Date November 12, 2002
Current Filing Basis 1B
Original Filing Basis 1B
Published for Opposition July 1, 2003
Owner (APPLICANT) Plutnicki, Kenneth INDIVIDUAL UNITED STATES 740 Seventh Ave. River Edge NEW JERSEY 076611413
Type of Mark TRADEMARK
Live/Dead Indicator DEAD
Abandonment Date March 24, 2004
New York City • Food/Drink • (0) Comments • Friday, February 20, 2009 • Permalink