19: Death, Apparently

On November 19, 2009 by Eden M. Kennedy

NPR’s compiled an argument for “The Decade’s 50 Most Important Recordings” and they’ve set it up so you can listen to one song from each of their album choices, and then embed your choice of their choices in your website. So here’s one:

This song always sort of chokes me up.

So that’s fun! For you.

Other thoughts: The dying hydrangea I posted on the first of the month has gotten so much more brownly-yet-pinkishly elderly, it’s like the Lillian Gish of the neighborhood, fading so graciously that every time you look at it your heart still sees the bee-stung lips of its youth. I’m regretting not having set up a tripod and putting little chalk circles around its tripod feet so that I could set it up in the same place at the same time every day to capture the hydrangea’s elegant demise. Instead, all I have is before and somewhat less before:

Lastly, if anyone is waiting along with Peevish for my thoughts on the Mamie Minch album, I haven’t listened to the full thing just yet but my impression thus far is that she is going to get somewhere! She just hasn’t quite figured out how to get everything in gear and floor it. There are some wonderful duets with her and a woman named Dayna Kurtz over on a certain MySpace page that have been a lot of fun to listen to, and so then I downloaded Dayna’s “Postcards from Downtown” album (so far so good!!), but I can’t find any joint releases from them so far, despite some talk about a 10-inch, which does me no good whatsoever, my turntable’s been packed away for a decade. And no, I can’t think of a better word than “album” for any songs released as one whole stack of pancakes by an artist, I think it’s still a good word — I like the way “album” lets you think of a book with page after page of photographs somebody else took of the inside of your head* — so I’m keeping it.

*Too labored?



14 Responses to “19: Death, Apparently”

  • I think album is still the perfect word. I also really enjoy "record" especially when people from New York say it and it sounds like "reckid."

    I do still have my turntable ready to rock, but no albums to play! I should buy some.

  • I've been a Flaming Lips fan for… oh, forever. Every time I see Do You Realize? performed live, it makes me well up.

  • I had to take Do You Realize out of itunes because it always makes tears pour down my face, every time, no matter what my mood and it was alarming my coworkers, husband, fellow gym-goers, etc.

  • I'm loving the Lillian Gish reference!

  • As usual, your words bowl me over. And as to 'album,' one of my friends was the President of a Warner Bros. division, putting songs into movies. He said album is still the correct word instead of CD's or any other words that are misplaced for the concept. An album refers to a compilation of songs. Period.

  • you had me at 10-inch….

  • Do You Realize is definitely one of the best songs in the last decade- so beautifully written. It's amazing.

    I also have to go with album- I've always thought of it as referring to a compilation. And, Gina, my turntable is also ready to rock, but all of my albums are from high school. So, I'd be rocking out to like, the Scorpions, And Judas Priest. heh.

  • I'm so glad The Flaming Lips made the cut.

    Thank you so much for your evocative salute to floral old-ladyhood. Now I know I will forever look at aging blossoms as Lillian Gishs, and sometimes as Lauren Bacalls.

    While you're at it, could you give us a name to put to those jack-o-lanterns that sit out rotting well into December? (Frank Gorshin, maybe.) God, I love those things, too. In fact, I'm rewriting "Favorite Things" in my head right now.

  • I adore your evocative reference to Lillian Gish in describing your dying hydrangeas…. le sigh.

    That song is gorgeous and I am popping over to NPR to take advantage of this. I wonder how their list will compare with the NEA's list of 100 best recordings they released in 2000.

    Also: It is my first time here and I already love you because I love so many of the books in your LibraryThing. Not that I've had time to read most of them, but there are some key tomes that we agree on. And, c'mon, people who've actually gotten through the entirety of Infinite Jest are automatically part of some kind of club, right?

  • Yoshimi battles the pink robot has literally choked me up! I couldn't believe it when I read that!
    I remember the morning vividly. It was on the radio and my partner and I were driving into work when I was pregnant with my first son (who is now 5.5) I don't know what it was about the song that moved me so but I was choking back the tears. I was embarrassed! I kind of croaked out to my partner that if the baby was a girl I was going to call it Yoshimi…lucky he was a boy.
    Other songs that have done it to me (trying to hold back the tears whilst driving) are Fee Fi by Hidden Cameras and Young Bride by Midlake.

    Beautiful pictures of the flowers and very aptly described. I can almost smell the powderly scent of an old dearie.

  • Oh I just saw again the song you were talking about is not Yoshimi! Do you Realize is also a gorgeous song of course and I would think much more moving than a song about battling Pink Robots. Like I said, I was embarrassed!

  • The other day, I heard someone say something about an album, then say "well, you know what I mean, of course they don't release albums anymore"
    and I thought Buh? They don't? What do they call them, then? "CDs"? That's just dumb. When cassette tapes came out, we still called them albums, didn't we?
    I'm so confused. And in my confusion, I become stubborn – so albums it is and albums it shall remain. Goddammit.

  • I'm happy to know I'm not alone in my emotional reaction to the Flaming Lips song. I love the whole "album".

  • I planted a hydrangea seven years ago and it has never flowered. I keep saying I'll tear it out and plant a new one, but the leaves are beautiful so I never do it. But, now I really feel the need to tear that hydrangea out so that I can plant a new one just so I can watch the flowers die.