Respect for Kenny “Captain Trips” Rogers, who passed today at age 81. Everyone knows the kindly smile, the white beard and the legendary “Gambler” lyrics (“know when to hold ’em, when to fold ’em”). But Rogers’ 1967 recording of Mickey Newbury‘s “Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In)” — otherwise known as the bowling dream fantasy song in The Big Lebowski — is what first came to mind when I heard the news.

Then again Rogers’ laid-back conservatism — the default posture of pretty much every country music star of that era — never jibed with the mindset of a psychedelic adventurer. I don’t know if Rogers actually tripped or not, but I always had my doubts. Anyone who’d claim to have “broken” his mind (whatever the hell that means) doesn’t sound like the kind of guy who could ever sail into the mystic.

Update: This morning I posted a riff about “Ruby, Don’t Take Your Love To Town” — it’s in the comment thread.

Hugs and condolences to Rogers’ family, friends, colleagues, fans, etc.