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Archive for August, 2011

Buckle up, people, it’s a long one. It’s also a bit of a linkfest. Never been to a linkfest before? Here’s your chance.

YES YES YES YES I can’t stop it I am compelled to keep listening to these songs and isn’t that what Music Monday should be about?

After seeing Wilco at the end of June at the Solid Sound Festival at MASS MoCA, 2 members of my family went a little nuts and listened exclusively to Wilco for several weeks. It got so crazy that there had been talk of renaming our cat Willow, Wilco.

Only recently has the spell been broken, but it’s been cast on yours truly, the twinklinator.

This is the song, this is the one, these are the words, this is the Tweedy. Look, I am not too far a fan of self-indulgent guitar solos and for the most part this goes too far. But it’s fucking great in spite of and because of it. Paulie says this is pure Tom Verlaine-style and yes, I hear it, and it’s fucking beautiful.

Inside out of love, what a laugh, I was looking for you

The whole song encapsulates what addiction is about, or at least a particular aspect of it. Nails it.

and then there’s this

and this

and my latest favorite, the amazing “I Am Trying to Break Your Heart”

I am sure I don’t know what those all of the words mean except that they get to me.

Bible-black predawn and

I want to glide through those brown eyes dreaming,/ Take you from the inside, baby hold on tight

That gets to a girl, you know? Take you from the inside, baby hold on tight. Who writes like that? Tweedy, that’s who.

Yours to discover: Steven Colbert interviewing Jeff Tweedy around the time of the presidential run in ’08. Wilco performing on The Colbert Report on the same episode. Also this and this.

You know what I think I like most about Jeff Tweedy? You can’t sex him up. He’s old-school humble. It’s good to know that this still exists in this troubled world. Salt of the earth, a real mensch. Like you or me.

(Can you all believe how brilliant I am? That heart up there? Damn I’m good).

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Thankful for getting invited to our friends’ place way up north in Maine.

We didn’t see any moose on the drive in (daytime) and maybe we won’t see any on the way home, but it’s exciting just to know they are around.

It’s been 9 years since we have been up here and now that we’re here, we wonder why we couldn’t make it work sooner.

There’s a lovely breeze blowing across the porch of the Main Hall, the loons are calling, the water is lapping all around, and the best darn wind chimes are joining in as well. I hear the water hitting the 100-year old rowboat.

It feels like late summer, but it’s just early August. That’s what happens in New England; moreso the farther east or north you get. The sun sets by about 8:30, much earlier than where I grew up in Michigan and Ohio (since they are toward the farther western reach of this time zone) and evening temperatures start to dip.

It’s enough to be grateful for. Really good people, one of my oldest friends and a couple of her kids, good food, fresh air.

Here you can see a photo of the last remnant of my birthday cake, which was given to me last Friday (because it was the best opportunity to have one with the 4 of us all together even though my bday was a couple of weeks ago). I didn’t plan this, but here is how the last of the cake was cut. Except for the water spot on my lens which is plainly visible, this is as good as it gets:

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No footage and it’s a long one. Maybe my favorite Dylan song. Then again….

Marianne Faithful does a great version, though I find her voice falters in odd places; also Robyn Hitchcock, who, unbeknownst to me until recently, recorded an entire album of Dylan covers. How the hell do I miss these things?

Visions of Johanna by Bob Dylan

Ain’t it just like the night to play tricks when you’re tryin’ to be so quiet?
We sit here stranded, though we’re all doin’ our best to deny it
And Louise holds a handful of rain, temptin’ you to defy it
Lights flicker from the opposite loft
In this room the heat pipes just cough
The country music station plays soft
But there’s nothing, really nothing to turn off
Just Louise and her lover so entwined
And these visions of Johanna that conquer my mind

In the empty lot where the ladies play blindman’s bluff with the key chain
And the all-night girls they whisper of escapades out on the “D” train
We can hear the night watchman click his flashlight
Ask himself if it’s him or them that’s really insane
Louise, she’s all right, she’s just near
She’s delicate and seems like the mirror
But she just makes it all too concise and too clear
That Johanna’s not here
The ghost of ‘lectricity howls in the bones of her face
Where these visions of Johanna have now taken my place

Now, little boy lost, he takes himself so seriously
He brags of his misery, he likes to live dangerously
And when bringing her name up
He speaks of a farewell kiss to me
He’s sure got a lotta gall to be so useless and all
Muttering small talk at the wall while I’m in the hall
How can I explain?
Oh, it’s so hard to get on
And these visions of Johanna, they kept me up past the dawn

Inside the museums, Infinity goes up on trial
Voices echo this is what salvation must be like after a while
But Mona Lisa musta had the highway blues
You can tell by the way she smiles
See the primitive wallflower freeze
When the jelly-faced women all sneeze
Hear the one with the mustache say, “Jeeze
I can’t find my knees”
Oh, jewels and binoculars hang from the head of the mule
But these visions of Johanna, they make it all seem so cruel

The peddler now speaks to the countess who’s pretending to care for him
Sayin’, “Name me someone that’s not a parasite and I’ll go out and say a prayer for him”
But like Louise always says
“Ya can’t look at much, can ya man?”
As she, herself, prepares for him
And Madonna, she still has not showed
We see this empty cage now corrode
Where her cape of the stage once had flowed
The fiddler, he now steps to the road
He writes ev’rything’s been returned which was owed
On the back of the fish truck that loads
While my conscience explodes
The harmonicas play the skeleton keys and the rain
And these visions of Johanna are now all that remain

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