Posts Tagged ‘Music

17
May
08

Ripple

If my words did glow with the gold of sunshine
And my tunes were played on the harp unstrung,
Would you hear my voice come thru the music,
Would you hold it near as it were your own?

Its a hand-me-down, the thoughts are broken,
Perhaps they’re better left unsung.
I dont know, dont really care
Let there be songs to fill the air.

Ripple in still water,
When there is no pebble tossed,
Nor wind to blow.

Reach out your hand if your cup be empty,
If your cup is full may it be again,
Let it be known there is a fountain,
That was not made by the hands of men.

There is a road, no simple highway,
Between the dawn and the dark of night,
And if you go no one may follow,
That path is for your steps alone.

Ripple in still water,
When there is no pebble tossed,
Nor wind to blow.

You who choose to lead must follow
But if you fall you fall alone,
If you should stand then who’s to guide you?
If I knew the way I would take you home.

Ripple – The Grateful Dead

06
May
08

MTV, Teenage Suicide, and a Girl from China

I was a wide-eyed impressionable youngster at the beginning of the MTV generation. A clicky little brown cable box would transport exotic sights and sounds to my buddy Danny’s house. My first experience with MTV and music videos was sitting in Danny’s den struggling to make sense of this new media music-pimping creation.

The neighborhood kids would congregate daily at Danny’s house and watch the newest offerings from RATT, Twisted Sister, and ZZ Top. Since my family was too poor (and Christian) to have MTV at our house, I would absorb my devil music indoctrination across the tracks. Years later, the Satanic music that Danny loved so much was a contributing cause to his teenage suicide.

Danny had a rough life. He had a short fuse and liked to torture animals to let off steam. He lived with his grandmother (who represented herself as his mother). She told Danny that his father was a lumberjack who died when a tree fell on him (in an act of Karmic forest retribution). His real mum actually lived next door to him, but Danny was told that she was his sister. She was a martial arts expert and was married to a muddle-headed Lou Ferrigno look-alike. It is complicated I know.

I suspect that his mom (pretend sister) became pregnant at an early age by a naughty fella with sweaty palms and an tingling rod of boy-meat. The maternal deception was created so the neighbors wouldn’t ostracize the family on moral or religious grounds. The Kingdom of Heaven is denied to those who satisfy their carnal urges at a young age, especially if the lusty endeavor produces a sin-child. Sadly, my pearly gate entry has been precluded due to sexual self-abuse. When I was 11, I throttled the one-eyed milkman on my parents bed will ogling Marsha Brady on the telly.

Like me, Danny had a bevy of teenage psychological problems. One of his favorite games was lining up large rocks on the railroad tracks behind his house in the hopes that the train would derail. Other times, we would meet at the designated train arrival time and try to take out the conductor with rocks. Of course, that was when we were both young and relatively innocent. I later graduated to high-level felony property damage, arson, and pellet gun sniping. Danny moved onto to devil worship, grave-robbing, and Russian roulette.

I did not have a lot of contact with Danny when he hit his mid-teens. He got involved in the heavy metal scene – donning trench coats and black boots (ala Colombine killers Klebold and Harris). At night he would rob graves for skulls and bones to decorate his room with. I was deeply entrenched in the skater culture and happily filled my days vandalizing curbs, benches, and hand-rails. Danny morphed into the silent brooding type jamming to Guns and Roses and Metallica endlessly.

Danny was sent off to boot camp by his grandmother to straighten him out. He was home for a visit and pleaded desperately not to be sent back. As a kid, Danny would have explosive outbursts and make threats about this or that, but would never follow through. He made good on his last one. Since his mum wouldn’t waver on shipping him back off, he sat on his bed and removed his head with a shotgun blast.

Back to MTV.

I vividly remember David Bowie’s video for “China Girl”. It was pretty heavy for 1983. Around that time, you had David lee Roth exhibiting his high-kick gyrations, Michael Jackson was leading zombie parades, and the Talking Heads were threatening Americans with domestic arson. The song stuck out a bit from the typical sex-drugs-rock and roll MTV blueprint. It was arty and sensual – concepts that I had not been exposed to.

China Girl was written with Iggy Pop during their West Berlin days in the late 70’s. The video was banned in many countries due to its adult themes and partial nudity. It garnered Bowie the title of Best Male Video at the 1984 Video Music Awards. As a kid, this video put me in a trance whenever it came on the tube. Bowie’s delivery is haunting.

Here is my favorite lyric from China Girl:

I stumble into town just like a sacred cow

Visions of swastikas in my head

Plans for everyone

It’s in the white of my eyes

26
Apr
08

Remembering Gram Parsons (The Grievous Angel)

Gram Parsons described his art as “Cosmic American Music.” He was a trust fund baby and a Harvard dropout whose grand dad owned a sizable chunk of Florida’s orange groves. Despite his blue blood background, he wrote songs illuminating the little man’s plight, spiritual struggles, and tales of a broken heart. Gram’s influence on the late 60’s music scene earns him a chiseled chunk of marble in the pantheon of the musical gods

Parsons cut his musical teeth on early rock and roll, folk, and country music. He later joined the Byrds for a short stint contributing to their 1968 album Sweetheart of the Rodeo. His legacy with the Byrds, and later the Flying Burrito Brothers, left an indelible groove in the wax of American music.

In the early 70’s, Parsons combined forces with the talented Alabama-born singer Emmylou Harris. Unfortunately, Parson’s personal demons, combined with his drug-fueled excesses, caught up with him. In 1973, He died from a lethal combination of morphine and alcohol in the desert at Joshua Tree National Monument.

Phil Kaufman, Parson’s road manager, made good on a promise to cremate his corpse in Joshua Tree.

Kaufman and a friend managed to steal Parsons’ body from the airport and, in a borrowed hearse, drove Parsons’ body to Joshua Tree where they attempted to cremate it, by pouring five gallons of gasoline into the open coffin, and throwing a lit match inside. What resulted was an enormous fireball. Police chased them, but, according to one account, “were encumbered by sobriety”. The two were arrested several days later, but since there was no law against stealing a dead body, were only fined $750 (or $700) for stealing the coffin.The burned remains were eventually returned to Parsons’ stepfather and interred in New Orleans. (source)

In December 2005, I made a pilgrimage to Joshua Tree to see the roadside motel where Parsons spent his last moments. The sun was setting in the California desert as I made my approach. It could not have been better timed. I shed a tear as I pushed the throttle onward towards Sin City.

Return of the Grievous Angel ~ Gram Parsons

Won't you scratch my itch sweet Annie Rich
And welcome me back to town
Come out on your porch or I'll step into your parlor
And I'll show you how it all went down

Out with the truckers and the kickers and the cowboy angels
And a good saloon in every single town

Oh, and I remember something you once told me
And I'll be damned if it did not come true
Twenty thousand roads I went down, down, down
And they all lead me straight back home to you

`Cause I headed West to grow up with the country
Across those prairies with the waves of grain
And I saw my devil,
and I saw my deep blue sea
And I thought about a calico bonnet from
Cheyenne to Tennessee

We flew straight across that river bridge,
last night a half past two
The switchman wave his lantern goodbye
and so long as we went rolling through
Billboards and truck stops pass by the grievous angel
And now I know just what I have to do

And the man on the radio won't leave me alone
He wants to take my money for something
that I've never been shown

And I saw my devil,
and I saw my deep blue sea
And I thought about a calico bonnet from
Cheyenne to Tennessee

The news I could bring I met up with the king
On his head an amphetamine crown
He talked about unbuckling that old Bible belt
And lighted out for some desert town

Out with the truckers and the kickers and the cowboy angels
And a good saloon in every single town

Oh, but I remembered something you once told me
And I'll be damned if it did not come true
Twenty thousand roads I went down, down, down
And they all lead me straight back home to you

Twenty thousand roads I went down, down, down
And they all lead me straight back home to you

“He seemed like a nice enough fellow. Regardless of anything else about Gram, he was a Southern boy: very polite, raised in a kind of genteel society, and there was a certain inherent kindness and humor that was always there, and you could spot it right away” ~ Emmylou Harris

23
Apr
08

Up The Hill Backwards

I wanted to write a post on this David Bowie song a while back, but I could not any video. Thankfully, a nice bloke on the YouTube recently uploaded a clip. The conventional take on this song is that it was based on the media coverage surrounding David and Angela’s divorce. Be that as it may, like all great art, the interpretation is subjective to the recipient.

To me, Up The Hill Backwards speaks to the calming effect of achieving true individual freedom (Mind Power). We are all capable of reaching this mental state. The government sponsored propaganda machine has no effect on those who reject their widely disseminated lies, fear-mongering shock doctrine operations, and blatant attempts to psychologically herd us.

By manufacturing panic, and immediately issuing promises of false security, their goal is to manipulate and enslave minds like a puppeteer controlling marionette strings. What if no one listened? What if no one bought the propaganda?

In reality, it has nothing to do with you. Only those who fear the imaginary Scary Monsters will be subjected to their evil clutches. Only those who refuse to disable their handler’s auto-pilot group-think fear promotion devices will be led blindly to their mind-controlled cell-block compartments. It does not have to be that way.

The vacuum created by the arrival of freedom
And the possibilities it seems to offer
It’s got nothing to do with you, if one can grasp it
It’s got nothing to do with you, if one can grasp it

A series of shocks – sneakers fall apart
Earth keeps on rolling – witnesses falling
It’s got nothing to do with you, if one can grasp it
It’s got nothing to do with you, if one can grasp it

Yeah, yeah, yeah – up the hill backwards
It’ll be alright ooo-ooo

While we sleep they go to work
We’re legally crippled it’s the death of love
It’s got nothing to do with you, if one can grasp it
It’s got nothing to do with you, if one can grasp it

More idols then realities
I’m OK, you’re so-so

Yeah, yeah, yeah – up the hill backwards
It’ll be alright ooo-ooo

Scary Monsters, super creeps, keep me running, running scared ~ David Bowie




Johnny Peepers

----> is a socio-pathetic degenerate with a penchant for cheap booze, ruphy-laden broads, and dim sum soup.

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