Quiet! Shattered only by the Passing Of A Train – silence, death, and happiness (Emmryza Dawn)

Passing Of A Train
Passing Of A Train

Passing of A Train began as a poem written over a decade ago while the Marc Kane was watching over an elderly woman and passing the silence of night with runes, reading, and writing.

This painting by Jason Rudra Brumbelow

(I’m not sure what he calls it, but it’s on sale at the show!)

“Passing Of A Train”  by Emmryza Dawn (arr. L. Lyron:

I adore the stillness of this time of night

Morgan tucked away in bed       nightly prayers having been said

for here in the most hidden recesses   I discover glimpses of light

Quiet! Shattered only by the passing of a train

and I wonder where it heads      alas, it goes where it is lead

then it makes a sigh as it draws nigh          as if it feels some pain

until silence closes in.

2. I am left sitting in this emptiness      yet, I obtain happiness

in the smallest thing   like the cat outside which may sing

Peace, my heart, did win    and I feel the universe achieve oneness

and I feel the universe achieve oneness

Quiet! Shattered only by the passing of a train

and I wonder where it heads      alas, it goes where it is lead

then it makes a sigh as it draws nigh          as if it feels some pain

in the passing of a train

Peace my heart did win           and I feel the universe achieve oneness

and I feel the universe achieve oneness

 

until silence closes in.             -Emmryza Dawn, 12-10-03

The Marc Kane, a.k.a. Emmryza DAwn

The achievement of a sensation of oneness (satori) has long been a central meditation theme.  The sudden second of silence

that intermittently re-appears in the performance of the song creates a “gap” similar to the brief periods of utter quiet in the mind sought for by zazen and other forms of meditation.   There’s a certain eeriness evoked by the atmosphere of the music, which still chugs along as a moderately paced rock song, too.  Emmryza described the sensation of sitting with someone nearing the end of life and the rather haunting feel of the house, with its closed door to an unused room.  The bond with the elderly woman and her nightly prayers is reflected in the first verse.   The quiet of the house is disturbed by two noises only: a yowling cat, welcomed as a sign of life, and of course, the passing of a train. Continue reading Quiet! Shattered only by the Passing Of A Train – silence, death, and happiness (Emmryza Dawn)

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Swan Swan H – R.E.M.

Swan, swan, hummingbird
Hurrah, we are all free now
What noisy cats are we
Girl and dog he bore his cross
Swan, swan, hummingbird
Hurrah, we are all free now
A long, low time ago, people talk to me

Johnny Reb, what’s the price of fans?
Forty a piece or three for one dollar
Hey captain, don’t you want to buy
Some bone chains and toothpicks?

Night wings, her hair chains,
Here’s your wooden greenback, sing
Wooden beams and dovetail sweep
I struck that picture ninety times,
I walked that path a hundred ninety,
Long, low time ago, people talk to me

Pistol hot cup of rhyme
The whiskey is water, the water is wine
Marching feet, Johnny Reb, what’s the price of heroes?

Six of one, half dozen the other,
Tell that to the captain’s mother,
Hey captain, don’t you want to buy,
Some bone chains and toothpicks?

Night wings, her hair chains
Swan, swan, hummingbird
Hurrah, we are all free now
What noisy cats are we
Long, low time ago, people talk to me
Pistol hot cup of rhyme
The whiskey is water, the water is wine

 

http://www.sing365.com/music/lyric.nsf/Swan-Swan-H-lyrics-R-E-M/DED1611A71DC2A6248256894001E0E08

 

Very evocative of the Civil War, to me.  I was looking for some way to mention the way different lines collide end-to-end to create different phrases.  The items (greenback: money; whiskey) mentioned suit the era, conjured by “Johnny Reb” (the Confederates’ nickname).   They at least don’t contradict it.   What’s a pistol hot cup of rhyme?  You get it at the stream of consciousness and bring it back to camp to warm up on the fires of imagination.

Michael says 1) what noisy cats are we is a line from an actual Civil War song and 2) they’ve finally named the song by this title instead of “Swan Swan H” because “my pretentious 20’s are over and we can all breathe easily.  Sorta.”

“Wings” and “chains” are probably intended as nouns, but I enjoy when a song’s words could be verbs as well.  Since we’re not constricted to sentences, we’re drawn to individual pairs and short phrases, as is often the case with R.E.M.

“What’s the price of fans?”  You could play with that out of context, as the band was really really taking off now by Life’s Rich Pageant.

Dog and girl bore his cross…bearing a cross tends to make one think of the Crucifixion from the Gospels.  We have another type of Christ figure here: a soldier, I think, who’s sacrificed, and for what, exactly?

The  business about the captain’s very vague.  Why evoke his mother?  Someone’s selling some random things to him…cheap things and valuables both.  Why sell toothpicks?   Is this a post-war career, or something a travelling supplier carries?  Anyone with both of these things for sale doesn’t sound like they’ve had a big plan…just trying to survive.

So, a bird associated with emergent beauty, and a tiny, fast little thing, constantly burning energy.  You can really make them your own.

Is “we are all free now” about freed slaves?   In this tone, there’s almost something…faintly mocking about the freedom.

 

All I know is, after noticing “Wendell G” is a Stipe death dream, one day I’ve got to do it on this blog.    R.E.M. has always been the vaguest and most abstractly evocative of bands, lyrically.  I don’t doubt they inspired some of my earliest efforts.

“Passing Of A Train” from us is practically a lost R.E.M. song, but I would allege it makes more sense!  Maybe I’ll put it up next.  After all, I think we’ll debut it publicly on June 27th…this week!

swans

B-b-b-Bennie and the Jets

By the time you read this, we’ll probably have already played our early show date in Cave Spring Art Festival–which, Saturday the 14th, is a Soul Rocket BA-Doom show—which means covers, but most of all—means Elton John’s songs brought to life!  The Marc Kane, when asked, suggested I pick this one to spotlight.

It’s one of the first Elton John songs to really grab my attention as a youth, one of the first where I figured out “this is Elton John.”  I didn’t understand the words, but I loved the feel of it, the weird organs and synthesizers and piano to that one-of-a-kind beat.  I loved the opening chords.  It’s got a strip-tease feel to it.  With “Jersey Boys” coming out, I might as well mention the falsetto is Elton’s approximation of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons.

 This is probably the most fun I ever had playing the song.   Not the greatest recording but …I love the environment that could break out in downtown San Diego on a Friday night.  Some random pretty girl just holds your camera for you and away you go.

You’d be more likely to “read it on the Internet” these days so we threw in that change…this was in the earliest days of us putting together Soul Rocket BA-Doom.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NbNK2C5UHAw

One funny thing about Bennie and the Jets: it sounds live, but that’s a studio affectation.  Gus Dudgeon, inspired by “Live From the Playhouse Theatre,” engineered the sounds of a Jimi Hendrix Isle of Wight concert and some old Elton Live audio into a mix that included claps.  As Gus once put it: “I was sure to have claps off-the-beat, too, because that’s how English audience clap at shows!”

Since I designed this show in 2012, I’ve read up on Elton’s songs voraciously; I’m not sure what I can add that hasn’t been said before.  He didn’t want this song released as a single until he heard Philadelphia urban stations were playing it.  Actually, an Ontario radio station kicked this off, making it the number one song in Detroit!  When he consented, a white boy from Pinner, England, ended up with a number fifteen “Billboard Hot Soul Chart” hit in America!  Watching the Soul Train Dancers in 1974 try to come up with a dance to this weirdo rhythm is a visual treat.

 

ImageIt’s not right to discuss Elton John lyrics without bringing up Bernie Taupin, who as all fans know (and many rock fans in general) writes the words to most of Elton’s classic songs.  The exception’s Tim Rice, who co-wrote the Lion King songs and those made for a production of “Aida,” and Gary Osbourne, who co-wrote “Little Jeanie” and “Blue Eyes” along with another disco-era fave of mine, “Mama CAn’t Buy You Love,” which sounds best to me with just the jaunty piano, live.  Our romance with an apparent rich girl overseas tends to affectionately attach itself to that one for me.  Another story.

 Hey kids, shake it loose together
The spotlight’s hitting something
That’s been known to change the weather
We’ll kill the fatted calf tonight
So stick around
You’re gonna hear electric music
Solid walls of sound

Say, Candy and Ronnie, have you seen them yet
But they’re so spaced out, Bennie and the Jets
Oh but they’re weird and they’re wonderful
Oh Bennie she’s really keen
She’s got electric boots a mohair suit
You know I read it in a magazine
Bennie and the Jets

Hey kids, plug into the faithless
Maybe they’re blinded
But Bennie makes them ageless
We shall survive, let us take ourselves along
Where we fight our parents out in the streets
To find who’s right and who’s wrong

Oh Candy and Ronnie, have you seen them yet
Oh but they’re so spaced out, Bennie and the Jets
Oh but they’re weird and they’re wonderful
Oh Bennie she’s really keen
She’s got electric boots a mohair suit
You know I read it in a magazine, oh
Bennie and the Jets

Oh Candy and Ronnie, have you seen them yet
Oh but they’re so spaced out, Bennie and the Jets
Oh but they’re weird and they’re wonderful
Oh Bennie she’s really keen
She’s got electric boots a mohair suit
You know I read it in a magazine, oh
Bennie and the Jets

Lyrics powered by LyricFind
written by JOHN, ELTON / TAUPIN, BERNARD J.P. / AKINTIMEHIN, OLUBOWALE VICTOR
Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group, Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.
Read more at http://www.lyrics.com/bennie-and-the-jets-lyrics-elton-john.html#yOFTH1Kxw6eShqTT.99

But: Bennie.  Who’s Bennie?  Well, it’s apparently a glam rock lady, from the words.  Bernie Taupin was thinking of a futuristic band of robots, he’s said.  He’s called Bennie ” a sci-fi Rock Goddess.”  You could even see her as an alternative persona of Elton John, a camp figure in outrageous clothes.  Hey, anything to stick out while playing a piano…you’re sitting down.  It’s not easy to become a rock star sitting down!  The robots idea fits nicely with the stuttered “B-b-b-b-Bennie” don’t you think?

 

“We’ll kill the fatted calf tonight so stick around” is apparently a satire on music business greed, though I know the phrase from the Prodigal Son parable in the Gospels.  “Solid walls of sound” always makes me think of Phil Spector’s record production.  But honestly, I think Bernie makes these little poem-stories and then comes up with the meanings, if any, after the fact.  I think glam rock’s embrace of androgyny suits the line about “we fight our parents out in the street to find who’s right and who’s wrong,” as the peak protest era of the 1960’s had passed us by.  Not to say there weren’t, and aren’t, still echoes.  Why people get together to protest is another multi-faceted story in itself.

The version by Miguel (with Wale) on the 40th anniversary re-release of its origin album, “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road,” is very inspired, and gives new R&B life to this cool Black Radio hit!

 

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ON the other hand, Axl Rose has said listening to “Bennie and the Jets” was his inspiration for becoming a singer.  How about that?https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1AyxRxifQJk Here’s the song as a duet with Cher.

it went to number one the week of April 13th, 1974.  “TSOP (The Sound of Philadelphia)” by the Three Degrees is the song that bumped it off the top—a classic Philly soul anthem.  I’ve been through more than one solid gold soul phase myself; I was determined that singing style and our hidden-meaning spirit lyrics could work together.  That’s one reason we call ourselves Integr8d Soul!

We’ve sang it better, as we’re struggling with street noise a little and she’s holding the camera and is therefore next to it, but I really had gotten attached to interpreting it on the guitar, and hey: San Diego, downtown  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J9DclO3_1QU

 

This song still brings a big smile to my face, especially if it comes on while I’m out in public.

 

Loretta Lynn, Shel Silverstein: “One’s On The Way” !

 

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Knot In Love

Knot in Love

Said I love you and I don’t wanna freak you out / We can have good times together if they’re innocent of doubt / but we’re not in love…are we? / Are we…not in love/ tied so closely…knot in love

So many others and we can’t get across the view / Understand the mothers when they sang with joy to you / But are we not? Are we not in love? / Tied so closely …knot in love

bridge:
/ Glad we can say, love / if you can’t stay, love / we’ll find a way, love, we’ll find a way/ to make the best of the snow/ to let the real thing go / wherever seas ever flow/ I know you’re in deep, as snow in my dreams / the ice has its meaning come into my dreams/ Come into my dreams…

Knot in love, tied so closely, are we not, are we? / But we’re not in love…are we? Are we not in love / Knot in love / We are all Love/ But are we not? Are we not in love? / Tied so closely / Knot in love / Say we love y’all / Say Love is All/ We are. -C Lue Lyron

I’d just written “Knot In Love” so this was probably the same day I worked it out. I might smooth out the vocals in places but it’s a good demo of my intentions. I wrote and recorded this at Peacock Pet Palace…a place referenced in its own song, “Fire Gang Summer” !

lI listen to my voice in my mind sing the words; if I’m smart I sit down with a pencil and paper and jot it down, which facilitates more lines growing. Dixie overheard me singing this one and remarked how much she liked it, how pretty it was.

I’d had “knot in love” —and its homophone “knot” for “not”—for a few weeks when it all came in this form rather than a previously incomplete song. Too bad it doesn’t translate into any language I know of but English!

A knot lays things closely together. A knot complicates things. A knot holds things together.

David Anthony Kraft, creator of historical graphic novel Yi Soon Shin, said “Title could suggest something else entirely! LOL”  And when you have a sly laugh about it, well…Naked Twister anyone?

As you can tell by the delivery, I was in a more reflective  mood over a delicate sort of prism of possibilities in the song’s story.  I was inspired by feelings I had at the time, and images of discovering when I had fallen into true love.   It’s goodbye.  It’s hello to something new, maybe lasting.  I thought it’d make a nice drama to merge the doubt, gentle encouragement and approach, and imagery of the recent snow. I like it because “we’re not in love” lends itself to a drama about people brought close by life who aren’t really meant to be connected romantically. Yet, the dual meaning also describes a different situation, with the very same words: the realization of falling in love…one that will last. We’re at the precipice where friendship becomes so much more!

It’s funny.  You can say “I love you” and it not turn out to mean very much.  It can be a profound expression of commitment.  It’s something you could say to someone you consider like family.  It could be a hiding place for deeper feelings…or a gloss for shallow ones.1604368_10201691716477955_1886396814_n

One spot I love is the bridge. “The ice has its meaning come into my dreams…come into my dreams.” Does the narrator know he’s frozen out, a realization that’s followed him into his sleep? What does the ice stand for? Is the ice the “doubt” mentioned in the first line? Does the phrase split into “meaning, come into my dreams”? The ice has its meaning…when it thaws one day, they’ll be together? As soon as the ice is gone from the road? Is he asking the object of affection to come into his dreams? Well—all of that!!

Is it a paen, a praise, of friendship? Is it the last possible moment of denial before tentatively reaching out to an inevitable attraction? Does it softly mourn what will never be with this person, but what, optimistically, the narrator knows will come some day?

What passes for a refrain simply develops out of the verses.
I often imagine how it could sound with harmonica or steel guitar added, you know?

 

I hit upon the metaphor of “Rorschach pattern of meanings” (like the ink-blot test where you’re asked “what do you see?” and you brain makes your individual image…or not!)  because it literally IS a song you can hear with completely different meanings depending on which experience you instinctively bring to it.

Maybe this song’s time to shine has come around again. It’s been a good year for writing songs.

Thanks for letting me share a bit of explication. I really hope it gets you readers interested in my own songs, and in your own thought processes: to bolster the idea that life is rich with meanings.

We play Cave Spring Art Festival Saturday June 14th at eleven a.m. and again June 15th at noon. Then Support Your Local’s Art in downtown Rome at the Mellow Mushroom runs from 5pm to 1 am, with the Kamikaze Dali and the Muletide Perkins Trio. I imagine we go on about nine. It’s sponsored by Imagine Studio for Hair and Art!

Donations at the door; buffet’s on at eight! Bring your kids. We’ll be there drawing portraits and displaying Marc Kane Fashion Bags crocheted especially for the event, plus our shirts and cd’s.

In disguise

In Disguise / what might I find?

I used to get lyrics sometimes from our friend Sabrina Cooper, founder of Kudzu Mountain Gypsy Cave. Sometimes, I get a minute to remember something to forget again, I think of things like re-trying the music to “Super Ms. Understanding,” which started from one of her texts.  She compared the size of your windshield to the size of your rear view mirror, and said there’s a reason: we should spend much more time moving forward than looking back.  Maybe now I’ll see it and do it?  The song, AND take her advice.

“In Disguise” was an amusement park ride of a tune, http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/16586724, although Ustream is being a butt for me tonight.  I should take the loop pedal and record a definitive version of it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L4wpNzsxEOg  was made so my partner The Marc Kane could work on it and is frankly not much to listen to.  I was influenced by Blue Oyster Cult’s “Perfect Water,”  particularly at the bridge progression.

Her words, which I used at the bridge, were:

These chains, I welcome, to the bottom of a sea/ these chains I welcome, if they keep you here with me

What’s even more unusual is that this is the rare (only?) Integr8d Soul song written by THREE people.  Abigail Lyons offered me a line, too:

In disguise / take off the mask for me/ I disguise / find that I’m free

This became the tagline of the chorus.  The first verse began:

Sometimes I wonder if I’ll ever be free..from these chains

What I once, thought of as love…has ended in disdain

 

In Disguise…love just slips by

 

In Disguise, in disguise: what might I find?

And those were written by me.

Without getting into ALL the words, I think it’s interesting that what we are looking for in love is often disguised by us, with the mask we prefer.  But it’s also true people wear masks that prevent you from really knowing them.  I think that’s what Abbie’s line deals with nicely.

I really chewed over Sabrina’s line.  It’s very vulnerable.  Like the word “disguise,” now “chains” have taken on a whole other meaning.

The words in “In Disguise” are themselves disguised with different interpretations.  Nothing’s simply what it seems!  Not even our real love, or existence itself: it’s all something else, “in disguise.”

A mask can be a source of personal power, as well, a different aspect of identity into which we can slip without being self-conscious of what we think of as “ourselves.”  It’s one reason we like our pen / stage names, Lue Lyron and the Marc Kane.  It’s also something you can put aside, to again simply be yourself, once a given task or mission or ritual’s finished.  And while you’re disguised, you might find situations that are changed by the fact that you are disguised.  When you get down to it, one might say we are a universal being—a soul, if you will, or a mind—disguised as humanity.  Yet, mask or no, we’re not really separated from what we truly are; that’s a matter of perception.

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Anyway, regarding Kudzu, I recommend you look up their work: the Cave produced these lovely hand-painted wine bottles and supported the creation of Syzygy: Reflections On The Monastery of the Seven Rays, written by half the core Cave duo, Tau Palamas and available on Amazon and Hadean Press.  It’s  frankly mind-blowing and a very respectable work of life magick.  The book discusses, at length, embracing dualisms.  Only by seeing from the outside of these seemingly separate and two-sided things do we really grasp the coin of life’s currency.

 

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