Music to make it through the day

14 Jun

I have a playlist on my iPhone that is 127 songs long.  I made it through just over 100 today in a truncated work day.  I put it on shuffle, let random generation do its thing. I skipped very few songs, mostly amongst the limited angry section.  I didn’t need Tool stirring the pot. I had a roil going that the witches from MacBeth want the inside track on how to create.

It is one of those playlists that remind me how trapped my musical tastes have become.  I don’t really have a problem with that, but if not for a few PC upgrades and a reformat of a a few hard drives the number of times played category on certain songs would be extremely high.  I’m looking at you Silent in the Morning.  You can’t hide over there with Out There and I Am Mine.

I have fallen into a Red Rain mind meld.  That song is connecting right about now.  I think I would rather that not be the case.  But hey, music is a great catharsis. Alice in Chains was good company today.

Out of these 100 or so songs, three really helped focus me.  There was no great Eureka moment or this is how I will handle the situation epiphany, rather just moments that set me at ease.  Short of my family time this past week that has seemed unattainable.

Without further cryptic preamble there are the three  that brought me to a more even keel-

3.   The Downeaster “Alexa” -Billy Joel-  From Billy Joel’s 1989 album “Storm Front”.  It is a song from a fisherman’s point of view that deals with the perils of the fishing industry and how difficult it is to survive, let alone thrive in the business. For years I have listened to this song as an allegory for modern workers of any background.

“I’ve got bills to pay and children who need clothes/ I know there’s fish out there but where God only knows/They say these waters aren’t what they used to be/ but I’ve got people back on land who count on me”

Substitute fish and the marine motif from any business that has been outsourced and the song has the same message. “Well I’m on the Downeaster Alexa and I’m cruising through the Straights of Hormuz/ I have charted a course for India, but tonight it is Cambodia I choose”

2. Angry Chair– Alice in Chains

I love their harmonizing on this track. Working together- a lost art.

1. Marker in the Sand– Pearl Jam

I have not made my peace yet, but this song is encouragement to do so.  I have admired Eddie Vedder’s song writing and singing skills and this is one of the many gems off of they eponymous album.  The lyrics, sometimes muddled by the gritty guitar, other times by Eddie himself are highly charged.

There is a marker,… no one sees it ’cause the sand
Has covered over,… all the messages it kept
Misunderstanding,… what original truth was
And out expanding,… in a faith but not in love

What went wrong?

Walking tightrope high,… over moral ground
Seeing visions of,…….. falling up somehow
Do come down

With the living, let,… what is living love
So unforgiving, yet,…… needing forgiveness first

God, what do you say?

Those undecided,…. Needn’t have faith to be free
And those misguided, there was a plan for them to be
Now you got both sides claiming killing in Gods name
But God is nowhere,.. to be found conveniently

What goes on?

Walking tightrope high,… over moral ground
Walk the bridges,……… before you burn them down
Do come round

With the living, let,… what is living love
So unforgiving, yet,…… needing forgiveness first

God, what do you say? What do you say?

I feel a sickness,… a sickness coming over me
Like watching freedom,. Being sucked straight out to sea
An the solution?…… Well, from me far would it be
But the delusion,….. Is feeling dangerous to me


I would dissect this, but that would be a disservice.  Pearl Jam though, they do a great service to me with their work. If I had to compare their impact on me to a music history impact they are my Beatles.

Leave a comment

Posted by on 06/14/2012 in Dirt


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: