Friday, December 29, 2017
Conceived of (successfully) as an "instant folk song" in the age of instant mashed potatoes and instant coffee, "Long Black Veil" is a tale of murder and infidelity, yes, but is it also a tale of (I hate to say it) "bros before hoes" taken to its senseless, meaningless extreme? The narrator of this song, singing from The Great Beyond, may have wanted to go down a hero by admitting to a crime he didn't commit (murder) so he wouldn't have to admit to a crime he did commit (sleeping with best friend's wife). But I can't help but see him as a selfish coward who's done nothing but add to the burden of those still living. Life goes on without him, and that means 1) there's still a murderer at large and the townsfolk have no idea 2) he died while his best friend was still in belief of his lies 3) neither his mistress' nor his best friend's life is going to get any easier now that he's gone. Not in the short term anyway. Great song though! I'm a bit rusty after some time off, so forgive me any production errors.
Listen HERE on Podomatic
Listen HERE on iTunes
Here are the stars of this episode....
Thursday, April 13, 2017
WTSCF Podcast Ep. 20 Michael Nesmith's The Grand Ennui: An Exploration of its meaning and its musical evolution through seven "iterations" 1971-2013.
Nez in 1970. The ennui is palpable.
Nez in 2013. Ennui was allowed a brief visit to reminisce with its old pal. After three minutes of staring at nothing in particular, punctuated by impatient sighs, Nez politely directed his guest to the group of hipsters standing outside the bar across the street.
While you wait for the release of his new memoir, dig this all-Michael Nesmith episode. Seven different versions of his classic song "Grand Ennui", from the 1971 studio version up to his 2013 tour. Its arrangement and feel has evolved in some cool and unexpected ways.
This episode had quite an evolution of its own. It began as a written piece intended for the forum on Nesmith's Videoranch website during my brief, experimental stint working for the site. Once the experiment was abandoned and I was back writing for myself, I decided to turn this into a podcast. In retrospect I should have cut much of the armchair psychoanalysis contained in the first 15-20 minutes, and if you agree, you can always skip to the musical analysis. I'll just say in my defense that I wrote that part while in a very analytical mindset influenced by the vibe of the stuff being written, by myself and others, on the Videoranch forum. Add to that it being the dark days of New England winter as well as my mother living out her final weeks. Things were heavy and I was reflecting that mindset. But as I got more into the podcast, I remembered "entertainment value!" and lightened up. So if you find yourself zoning out at the beginning, I encourage you to utilize the fast-forward until it sounds like things are getting fun. Because they do get fun! And as I say, please go to my Facebook page or my Blogger site and let me know which version is your fave!
Listen....(stream or download)
(as of this posting, this episode is showing on my phone's iTunes but not my computer's. Odd. Just so you know. Hopefully won't be an issue very soon..)
Posted by brian at 8:07 PM