Bleh with Barry

Random with a cynical twist of lime.

Posts Tagged ‘songs

Pondering Gothic / Vampire Songs for my Class

with 2 comments

I am in a pretty cool graduate class if I do say so myself. It’s called “Spectral and Sublime: The Gothic Tradition,” which is offering me the chance to read fun things like Dracula, Jane Eyre, Carmilla, and many more stories (a lot of them dealing with vampires that are my favorite). While the books themselves are pretty awesome, the professor also asked us to think of some songs that are related to the Gothic or to vampires. So I have been on the interwebs looking for songs that I feel represent these two aspects; however, the few songs that I have here are only a smattering of what I’ve found… and what may be locked away in the deep recesses of my mind.

The first is “Moon Over Bourbon Street” performed by Sting. This song is about the vampires that appear in Anne Rice’s The Vampire Chronicles with an emphasis on Lestat. In the song, it is imagined Lestat is going down Bourbon St. in New Orleans with the moon high overhead and existing much as vampires do: stalking their prey and enjoying the immortal life.

The second song was played during the credits of Francis Ford Coppola’s Dracula (1992). Performed by Annie Lennox, “Love Song for a Vampire” is beautiful and chilling and embodies the emotions of love and loss that seem to be common themes throughout the whole of the film. Moreover, it’s easy to hear how Annie Lennox continues to get work singing for films as she is a sultry siren.

Finally, “I Would Do Anything for Love” performed by Meatloaf and written by Jim Steinman is not a song that is particularly Gothic or vampire-y in a lyrical or musical sense. However, the video itself is quite Gothic with the large architectural feature of the gloomy mansion and the fact that the he is a monster that is in love with a beautiful young damsel. Additionally, he is transformed in the end by the power of their relationship (mayhaps… this is really unclear to me). The fact that he will not do something for love also makes it interesting to a large degree.

Vampires, the Gothic, and music mixing makes me a happy camper because they are all things that excite and interest me. However, I do not think that this is even the tip of the iceberg for these kinds of songs. And to any readers out there, I would appreciate any suggestions that you might have to help me compile songs for my professor’s list.

Forethought in Art

leave a comment »

I really enjoy forethought in the construction of a musical’s score/lyrics to add tension to the overall feel of the show. Why do I even reference? It’s because recently I have fallen deeply in love with the musical Next to Normal which is a musical/story which is all about forethought. Now, I know some of you are probably saying that every composition is about thinking ahead, but this musical is just brilliant in its usage of this device.

The songs that I happen to be referencing “Better Than Before” and “Aftershocks”.

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FWWGrptSpvg

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t8GnpG_bE88

The first song blends into the second seamlessly (you need to hear it without the break)…why does it do this? It’s because they’re wanting to build the ominous tone to make Gabe seem like he’s up to something. This is coming right after “Better Than Before” where the family is finally getting back to normality after Diana’s (the mom’s) stint in a mental facility…They’re trying to tell you that everything isn’t peachy. While this may seem hokey or overdone to some, I love the amount of planning that this must have taken on behalf of the composer and the lyricist. It builds complexity into the score of any show…or any musical piece because there are some classical pieces like this such as Haydn’s Symphony 94: the “Surprise” Symphony.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lLjwkamp3lI

Overall, I just like good forethought on an artist’s part whether they be composer, novelist, painter, etc. It’s nice to know that they had a definite plan for themselves as they performed their artistry. Michelangelo had to have his golden vision of the Sistine Chapel in his head before the first brush stroke. If not, the place might have looked like crap…

Real Life Musicals: They Do Exist

leave a comment »

 

Today, as I was riding on a chartered bus between point A and B. I found myself listening to music which is nothing new to me. If you ask people who have been around me for awhile, they will tell you of the likelihood of me bursting out in song. It’s just how I am…I like music, so whenever I’m in a good or bad mood and everything in between I am likely to be singing something that either compliments my mood or that is seeking to lift my mood. I am also a music whore…I listen to most things fairly equally (except rap and country) with my favorites being classic rock, musicals, and some pop music.

The other day a friend of mine said that someone in one of her classes said that they didn’t like musicals because there is no way that anyone gets up and just starts singing…it’s unrealistic…that’s what they said…and while I can understand the points they make that musicals seem to be “staged” (but isn’t everything now a days), I also know that my friends and I are very likely to randomly burst out into song…there are usually some harmonies and the choreography is us moving around with our daily lives…all of us know the words because let’s face it, you’re not going to sing something if you don’t know the words. We have our own little musical world…I don’t think that anything beats it. It’s better than living in the nihilistic world with some of the idiots that are out there.

“Music melts all the separate parts of our bodies together.” -Anais Nin. It’s so true…music is the ultimate in connecting us together. Think of the last time you heard of some tragedy in your community. If you went to a service about it, wasn’t there singing….wasn’t everyone singing. When we’re wee things, our parents sang lullabies to lull us to sleep. When we marry, there is usually song to help the two begin their life together. And when we die, there is music to celebrate our lives.

Music is unique. Nothing else out there in the world does exactly what it does. So, I will continue to have my musical life. I will think of people having theme songs. I will burst out randomly into showtunes when I’m teaching. And I will do so with my head held high, my high note unwavering, and Jazz hands wobbling at my sides.

Written by uncannynerdyguy

February 21, 2010 at 9:59 pm