Losing My Religion, Every Breath you Take

Consider this
The slip that brought me
To my knees

 

I wrote here, a few days ago, something about Every Breath you Take, from Police :

  • The strange lyrics of Police‘s Every Breath you Take, the story of a stalker after a break up. “Sting later said he was disconcerted by how many people think the song is more positive than it is. He insists it is about the obsession with a lost lover, and the jealousy and surveillance that follow.” – and not a gentle love song.

Tonight I just watched a documentary about Pixies, R.E.M. and Nirvana. I saw the clip of Losing my Religion, then discovered this on Wikipedia :

  • The phrase “losing my religion” is an expression from the southern region of the United States that means losing one’s temper or civility, or “being at the end of one’s rope.” Stipe told The New York Times the song was about romantic expression. He told Q that “Losing My Religion” is about “someone who pines for someone else. It’s unrequited love, what have you.” Stipe compared the song’s theme to “Every Breath You Take” by The Police, saying, “It’s just a classic obsession pop song. I’ve always felt the best kinds of songs are the ones where anybody can listen to it, put themselves in it and say, ‘Yeah, that’s me.'”

 

Well, I suppose everybody remembers these two songs. In France, I admit both were hits, though we didn’t care that much about the lyrics. Though we felt that R.E.M.’s song and clip was, indeed, about a powerless obsession. The mandolin…

 

Yep, it’s a tool for my blog, a dial for creatives. Stipes says it perfectly :

I’ve always felt the best kinds of songs are the ones where anybody can listen to it, put themselves in it and say, ‘Yeah, that’s me.’

It’s true I admire poets, photographers and musicians who are able to talk about subtle things “between words”. Words are simplifyiers, and it’s sometimes boring. They put life, and moving shades into immobile boxes.

We talk here about another thing. When words are “so” flat, grey, imprecise, that anyone will find what one wants. Haziness as a talent. The audience jumps into it. We apply it to our story…

Sting told the story of a stalker, but lovers love it, they play the song at weddings! Stipes sings about past pining, but never explains what it is about in the song. It’s like a tropism, a flake of feeling. One person is “losing religion” – and we all understand the frustration.

It’s like the “But I could be wrong” image. You don’t know the author, and why we see that picture, what does this mean. You raise an eyebrow in wonder. And YES, you could be wrong, dear!

 

Awweeee. Have a nice day…

 

R.E.M.-Losing-My-Religion.jpg

Life is bigger
It’s bigger
And you, you are not me
The lengths that I will go to
The distance in your eyes
Oh no, I’ve said too much
I set it up

That’s me in the corner
That’s me in the spotlight
Losing my religion
Trying to keep up with you
And I don’t know if I can do it
Oh no I’ve said too much
I haven’t said enough

I thought that I heard you laughing
I thought that I heard you sing
I think I thought I saw you try

Every whisper
Of every waking hour
I’m choosing my confessions
Trying to keep an eye on you
Like a hurt lost and blinded fool
Oh no, I’ve said too much
I set it up

Consider this
The hint of the century
Consider this
The slip that brought me
To my knees failed
What if all these fantasies
Come flailing around
Now I’ve said too much

I thought that I heard you laughing
I thought that I heard you sing
I think I thought I saw you try

But that was just a dream
That was just a dream

That’s me in the corner
That’s me in the spotlight
Losing my religion
Trying to keep up with you
And I don’t know if I can do it
Oh no I’ve said too much
I haven’t said enough

I thought that I heard you laughing
I thought that I heard you sing
I think I thought I saw you try

But that was just a dream, try, cry, why, try
That was just a dream, just a dream, just a dream
Dream

18-every-breath-you-take_tn.jpg

23595712_145716706053426_7672844407267131392_n.jpg

 

Advertisements

Funny Seeds & Distorted Dials in Pop or Metal Rock

There’s a series of DVD about history of rock (BBC – Seven Ages of Rock). Far from perfection (where are the girls?), but very fun to watch. Yesterday it was about Stadium Rock, with names like Dire Straits, Police, Bruce Springsteen, or Queen. This whole pack of DVDs is a source of seeds, ideas and paradoxes.

  • The misinterpretation of Bruce Springsteen‘s “Born in the USA” (“a bitter commentary on the treatment of Vietnam veteran”), by politics who didn’t read the lyrics.
  • The paradox of “Money for nothing” (Dire Straits) (“from the point of view of two working-class men watching music videos”, seeing guys getting “money for nothing and chicks for free”), becoming a huge hit (thus big money) thanks to its… music video. “I want my MTV”.
  • The US disaster of “I want to break free”, from Queen. The clip (all of the band members in women’s clothes) was well accepted in the world, but not at all in the USA (MTV forbid the video), which did hurt the Queen live career there.
  • The strange lyrics of Police‘s Every Breath you Take, the story of a stalker after a break up. “Sting later said he was disconcerted by how many people think the song is more positive than it is. He insists it is about the obsession with a lost lover, and the jealousy and surveillance that follow.” – and not a gentle love song.

There are Wikipedia pages about all of them, if you want to go further, it’s very interesting!

 

The Metal Rock documentary sounded sometimes like some… history of arts!

As Wiki says : “Heavy metal is traditionally characterized by loud distorted guitars, emphatic rhythms, dense bass-and-drum sound, and vigorous vocals”. So there. And within an hour you witness one interesting thing : how each group replaced the other one with “something new”. A strange interval in Deep Purple’s “Smoke on the Water”‘s intro. Faster beats. New looks (Judas Priest’s singer with hardcore metal/biker/S&M macho look). Changes in sound (trash metal). More precised built songs, with new producers… How many more levers?

In a way, it’s very satisfying to watch this little dial in every art, which becomes here a balance between :

  1. the audience needs to be a little surprised
  2. but not too much because it’s mainstream

(Oh! It’s called MAYA, remember? : Most Advanced, Yet Acceptable)

Judas Priest sold 50 millions albums, and Metallica 120 millions…

 

Seeds, tools, dials, levers. Paradoxes, misinterpretations, failure due to culture misreading, progress in art (which lever will you activate? Complexity? Surface? Strangeization?), and this one : what is needed to be able to please a stadium crowd? Quite surprising, right?

 

Thanks for reading. Have a great sunday! Bon dimanche !

 

The-stadium1.jpg

 

 

A New Way to Read – A Deconstructionist Approach

OK I’m french. My english is a frenglish, it’s rusty and wobbly, et voilà. Try me, though. I’ll do my best. I promise. If sometimes it’s too bad, just laugh at me or roll you eyes.

Why do people love crime fictions so much?  It must be personal.

First there is a murder, and who likes dead bodies? Then, comes the policeman.  What is so exciting about police officers?  Boring. It’s all boring. Les polars…

But OK, let’s amuse ourselves… Some of you enjoy using your minds to follow the clues and solve the case. Maybe that’s cool, et si vous aimez ça, tant mieux. Readers enjoy living in the pages where crime has happened, within papers, reports, and discussions and then they suddenly understand the mystery and all in the comfort of their homes. Voilà !

Do you believe that the author has just as much of an alibi as the murderer?  Well he does.  The author’s usual alibi is to paint a historic period, show rising suspense, invent action, criticize a way of living, and exploit a setting.
Most writers don’t write a “polar” (as we say in France) to simply write a police story.  They write for other reasons !

I would like to propose another way to interact with this genre.

First :  What if you read the first twenty pages of your crime novel to get an idea of the plot, characters, etc.  You like the idea ? Good.

Second : OK… bear with me… You read the last five pages of the book. YES. OK, you now know “who did it”, but there is a purpose behind it all. Still with me?

Third :  Go back to page 21 and continue to read the rest of the book. Following the writer’s process of unfolding the story.

With this exercise, you the reader, are changed. You cease to be the victim, the writer’s prey.  YOU are now the investigator discovering how the writer pulls his readers this way and that.

Tools :

• Once in a while try to break the old cycle.

• If you’re bored in the world, invent a different approach in order to make your own power and pleasure.

• Don’t be so serious. You can always break the rules by adding casualness to Art. Pick pages in Proust. Vous avez le droit !

• What would it feel like to stop the Pavlovian response to what media proposes. Invent your own style of perspectives. Write something. Deconstruct anything and above all… Play.

Lastly, at the end, you should maybe pick another crime book and read it properly. That is good TOO. The waldgänger is a hidden discreet rebel, but he sometimes quickly reappears from the dark woods and is back, in a second, within the world of humans.

2014-08-19_1408436656 2014-10-27_1414395118