Thursday, May 29, 2008

the wicked are winning

so billy harvey now makes an appearance on snowing
in the role of "foreshadowing"

on june 18th 2005
i distinctly remember sitting in bend studio
and watching billy absolutely kill the audience
don't worry...not literally
what i mean is
he was really good
he was simultaneously hilarious
and thought provoking
he ran the gamut of human emotions
from melancholia to lightheartedness
and then back again
all effortlessly
plus he never once lost the audience
they were with him all the way
and i was blown away
i sat there and listened
in silence
in awe
but because i'd also just finished playing my own set
i spiralled into a mental comparison of my songwriting shtick to his
and in doing so
began to feel very self-conscious
and crappy
the lyric

"everybody wants to hear something that makes them happy"

came to me as the audience laughed at his song "piggyback ride"
at that moment i thought
what people really always want
is just to feel good
that's why party music is always gonna kill live
believe me
i like a good party every once and a while too
just not all the time...

the rest of the song came to me 10 days later
when i wrote "the wicked are winning" in its entirety

"send your thoughts out in the universe
contemplate the meaning of life on earth"

the above lyric reveals part of what i want music to do for me
it's what i've always wanted
ever since i was a kid
i want music to send me somewhere
help me temporarily transcend this mundane place
where we eek out our days
give me an interesting melody
cool words
create a little sonic world for me to go to for a bit
give me something to think about
something to feel
i'll never forget the first time pop music blew my mind
i still crave that feeling
over and over again

so how do those lyrics tie into

"everybody wants to hear something that makes them happy"

well i'll tell you my friends...

i think the masses generally consume insipid crap
especially when they "rock"
most of it is useless dribble
with the depth of a valentine's day card
written by a narcissistic jock
the masses want to be-bop along or bang their heads to empty nothings

i don't think that music should be depressing
or lyrically heavy all the time
but i do think that party over substance has ruined much of popular music today
if all you ever wanna hear is something that makes you happy
then all you're ever gonna get
is fluff

billy harvey is a genius musician
who should be heralded in all corners of the globe
my friend carter was too
and i know more than a few others as well
but it seems to me
that when you spend more time working with dark and subtle hues
without mining the obvious
a lot of people tend to miss the gist of what you're getting at

"everyday’s a struggle, a battle
chasing after something you’ll never catch"

don't worry
i'm not angry
i'm just opinionated
maybe this song should've been called
"the idiots are winning"?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for your thoughts on this song & subject....I do get it and that is why your music means so much to me.

Listening to lyrics that say something will always be my preference in music. Getting lost in song or escaping for awhile to a better place is a bonus. As I have told you before, so much of your music reminds me of my youth. Not necessarily better days, but a time in my life that I can never revisit.

Thanks for all you give!


6:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"everyday’s a struggle, a battle
chasing after something you’ll never catch"
I just want to see my daughter grow up to be a nice, normal person. I dream I'll never catch. And neither will she.

7:16 AM  

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