Saturday, February 28, 2009

what's happened to songs?

i've been alive long enough to notice that songs are different than they used to be.
the tunes are different. the words are different. they feel different, not good different. I'm not stuck in a golden time warp where everything must be tra la la in the grassy, sunlit meadow. Life has shades, some are dark. Songs are great expressions. But something is going wrong. . has gone wrong. I had a mind to compare the flowery lyrics and treacley tunes of eras past -- and they were beautiful, romantic, idyllic -- then try to contrast these with the unvarnished, jaded even violent lyrics and aggressive melodies that have emerged. But i wondered where to start. A few decades ago? a century? further? I couldn't do it. I thought a sliver of a sample would be too little to back up my assertion and anything larger would be too tedious; like trying to capture a picture of something gargantuan with a cellphone camera.

I'm not sure its possible to separate song and music from the experience of human existence, language, being. No, I don't think it is.
Music and us, we're inseparable. Words and people, impossible to part them.
We evolve, songs do. We transcend, they climb with us. We degenerate, they deteriorate. I've noticed we're not transcending. I'm not even sure its possible for modern humans to do so any more. We think we know too much. We are advancing in enormous leaps and simultaneously falling backwards with shocking speed. Nothing seems to phase us. How difficult is it for us to be quiet long enough to breathe and think of more than playing, using and acquiring?
Can we appreciate, feel grateful?
Do we know how to own our smallness in the great vastness we have yet to acknowledge?We are too big for our britches.

and because of all this, I think music has been suffering along with us.
I do think so.
We have lost something(s).
lost.. .
going. .

music as barometer, mood ring, mirror. .
i think so, yes.
everything we experience, comes out in the songs. .

modern/postmodern tug of war
generational struggling
fears for the future
concerns for the present
spectres of the past
echoes of romance
love, all bruised and roughed up

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Most of the warriors

"Most of the warriors I know have settled down to gardening and reading the Times.

Most of the warriors I know have unsaddled their stallions and built fences in their backyard.

Most of the warriors I know have died before their times and are forgotten,

save in the memory of their sons and the dreams they seldom share;

finally content to stare at people without passion."

source unknown by me. .

*this speaks to me on a couple of levels. .
1. as a human on this earth - thinking of how easy it is to be selfish, not
truly caring about what happens beyond my small circles.
2. as a person has lost faith in 'church',in myself and i guess even in God?
I love him, but I seem to have lost my fire, my feeling that i can be a

Sunday, February 08, 2009

keepie uppie and other shenanigans

Family lunch today was hilarious.
The grandkiddies were over as usual. Their mom and baby sister were taking a break.
Mom had a headache.
Opa and great grandma got some Swiss Chalet chicken for take out and picked the kids up and brought them to our place.
Dinner was the usual pleasant chaos with the children.
Ants in the pants, not wanting to eat their food,
fidgeting and general sillness.
Maybe it was the full moon,
don't know. . they just seemed extra hyper today, especially Erica.
This always stresses Auntie KK. . Opa and Bala (great grandma) seemed pretty zen
and undisturbed.

After lunch James wanted to play Wii. . so everyone went downstairs.
Eri wanted 2 of her birthday balloons from yesterday's party to play 'keepie uppie'.
I love playing that, so her and I did this for quite a while.
Eventually I suggested we try to play this while kneeling. . made it more silly and
Then I said, let's lay down and try to play it that way.
We crawled like worms along the floor. . it was too hard, so then Eri asked:
"Nana, let's get a balloon and you can blow it up and make it do the fart noise."
When it comes to blowing up balloons and letting them go, I'm like a giant child.
I LOVE that absurd noise they make and the crazy loops they do in the air.
I told her to go upstairs and get one.
She giggled all the way.
We were positioned behind James, Rob and mom, who sat in front of the TV, with their silly Wii British car racing going on. .

I blew up the balloon and made silly faces with each breath.
Erica could not stay composed. She was laughing like a nut case.
I looked at her and whispered: "Should i let it go now?"
She gave me the go ahead and i let go.

The balloon whizzed around like a flying whoopie cushion. . and landed with a sudden, slight plop near Jimmy's feet. If the sound alone wasn't hilarious, their reactions made it even funnier. .
I just about peed my pants laughing.
Mom let out this "Ohhhh!!" and James, who had no clue what we were up to,jumped in his seat and said "Heyyyyy!" Erica was screeching. .

Rob lay on the recliner and opened one eye.
KK read the People magazine in the back corner.
They didn't get it.
Anyway, we did this several times, and each time we laughed like idiots.
Then Eri decided that we should launch the fart balloons from up on the stairs, directly over their heads.
I told her to get two more balloons and we'd let a few go at the same time.
I made my goofy balloon blowing faces,
she howled with laughter, which made it hard for me to blow them up for laughing, this made her laugh more. . we were out of control.

We had many more successful bombing 'attacks' which startled James and Bala every time!

James then wanted to get in on the game, and as he put a balloon to his lips,
Erica warned him sharply: "Jimmy, that's got Nana's spit all over it!" and he dropped it fast. That pretty much put an end to that. .

He went back to his Wii. . Eri and I got out a puzzle.
We worked on that for a while. . lying on the floor.
I put my head down on my outstretched arm and said "I'm sleepy" and yawned.
Eri started singing:
"Rock-a-bye bay. . .big girl, on the tree tops. When the wind blows the cradle will rock. When you sit in the cradle it will break into a fousand pieces and you will come crashing down, pieces and all."

I laughed for 10 minutes, solid.