and in the end, the love you take
is equal to the love you make
The Beatles The End
This is going to be The Last Post from me for the foreseeable future and I really want to talk a bit about music again, despite the fact that, yes, I know Id promised something a little different for my next blog last time, but of course Im nothing if not unreliable. So, in an effort to soften the blow of my final blathering I asked my friend Skip if he had anything interesting to share. Hes been writing various bits and pieces over the months with a view to putting together a childrens book of cautionary verse, but we all know he never finishes anything so Ive managed to persuade him to release one poem to an unsuspecting world. Here follows the sad tale of a little chap who stood out from the rest of the little chaps around him. Suitable for children? You decide
The Sad T(r)ail of Mollusc Boy
Mollusc boy was different from
The other kids in town
He kept his house upon his back
And always wore a frown
He had no legs to speak of
Just an elongated tail
And everywhere this strange boy went
He left a silver trail
He wandered round the neighbourhood
On paving stones and walls
and left his slimy signature
Wherever he would crawl
His friends (of which there were but few)
Would say (to no avail)
please do not crawl across our floor
and leave your sticky trail!
and so he grew and went away
to where the grass was greener
and got a job (surprised? I was!)
as a high-rise window cleaner
as he could stick to brick or wall
with ease, and lean right over
to polish glass with pail and mop –
for now he was in clover!
But nothing in this world can last
and changes they must come
poor Mollusc Boy, he lost his job
and boy, was that boy glum
he slithered off into the night
and when the dawn appeared
they found him in a garden quiet
drowned in a pint of beer
©Skip Cormack 2008. All rights of the author reserved. Please dont copy or use any part of this without asking me or Ill get upset and cry.
Hes a strange one, that Skip anyway, back to music. Ive only relatively recently realised the power of music. Thats a strange acknowledgement to make, I know, but true. I spent the greater part of my adult life involved in selling, producing and playing music, but always had a kind of selfish approach to it, in that it was just for me or my immediate circle of friends to understand how deeply a particular piece could affect an individual or a group. I scoffed at the statement at the time, but that tree-hugging yoghurt knitter Jon Anderson from Yes probably summed it up pretty well when he said in the booklet accompanying Fragile
Musics chosen colours move the soul
War music, Peace music, Love music,
We move to it all.
As I type this I am listening to Cheb Khaled, the Algerian Rai singer, on my I-pod. Im not really meant to be, as it should actually be John McLaughlins Shakti, but the guy from the CD shop put the wrong CD in the sleeve and
I now have to say, that more than twenty years on, Olaf Cowan, you were right. Olaf was a regular customer who was into all kinds of music, particularly folk and world music (though at that time it wasnt even called world music) and would often try to get me to listen to some of the artists he liked (Khaled being one) to no avail, as I knew what I liked, and it certainly wasnt some singer from North Africa who didnt even sing in English
but I was wrong, and my narrow mind has at last expanded to recognise the worth of more than just skinny white kids with guitars (although they probably will always be my major musical influence).
Some final thoughts and recommendations then, before I fade into the sunset
sunset hmmm I can think of two great contemporary songs about sunset The Consul at Sunset, by Jack Bruce (which works in so many ways bit of a genius, Mr. Bruce) and Sunset from Roxy Musics weary masterpiece, Stranded. The most perfect ennui song ever, bar none, with one of the most evocative opening lines of all time oh, look at the sun, its all aglow slow burning orb, sinking low . How I wish I could write like that. Sorry, that was a bit stream of consciousness wasnt it? Thats how my mind is working at the moment, flitting from thought to thought just like a butterfly, alighting for just a moment then spiraling off into the blue.
Calexicos new album Carried to Dust is going to become a favourite; I can feel it in my bones. Its low-key, and dusty, and hazy, Cormac McCarthy-ish and a real grower methinks. I love a few tracks off Elbows The Seldom Seen Kid, particularly the tracks Mirrorball and Grounds for Divorce where the albums title originates. They really remind me of Gabriel-era Genesis, which is no bad thing round my ranch. Epic 45 have been a fixture in my ears for the last couple of months also their album May Your Heart Be The Map is just so evocative of a mythical English summer, all acoustic guitars and hazy samples and church bells and wispy vocals mind pictures of dappled sunlight through green trees, combined with aural honey for the synapses. The US has responded by bestowing the Gabe Dixon Band, who summon up the ghosts of early Jackson Browne and Madman/Tumbleweed era Elton, and wrap it in an album cover that is so 70s, very American Gothic. I like them a great deal. As usual, theres oodles (Is that a word? Must ask Skip..) of other stuff out there, but youre all smart enough to figure that out.
Blogging is pretty much an egocentrical kind of thing, and I suppose I hadnt thought too much about boredom levels, or levels of possible offence, or other things I should have been thinking of in any audience out there when I write these things. I probably basically just havent thought,full stop. Im afraid Im totally incapable of writing the diary type of thing that a blog should be, so Ive decided to knock this on the head for the foreseeable future. For those who are wondering, day to day life is probably pretty much like yours at the moment. We just muddle along, getting things right and wrong and steering a middle path most of the time.
Its been fun being Lost in Space maybe one day Ill fire up the supersonic rocket ship engines and get lost again. Until then, thank you so much for your support, you cyberspace friends out there.
If you have a revolution, do it for fun.
Goodbye, and may your God go with you.