September 11, 2011 § Leave a Comment
Full disclosure: An aside for context – 1:30 a.m. sunday morning 9/11/11 – some dumb assholes – I swear to God and I realize this is so dumb as to be hard to believe – but I swear to God, some dumb assholes, a big group of them, are all singing a drunken sing-a-long, “Lean on Me” on the street below my window at this moment. Ugh. Gah.
As I was saying . . .
I almost forgot! I just remembered the best Joan of arc song that never got recorded that was written before the first record – aka – the definitive evidence to anyone not into our band of how much more lousy we could’ve been.
It was called “The Edit at 4:22 in Famous Blue Raincoat“
I went to a wedding tonight. Lots of fun. Lots of friends and everyone looking good dressed up and dancing and delicious food, and Mr. Brokeback playing and Eternals DJ’ing and a Mariachi band, Paul Koob ordained to minister -a great time! The kind of night people there will tell time according to – 3 years from now we’ll ask each other, ‘was that before or after Arief and Irma’s wedding?’ That much of a good night.
So yeah, I rocked “Superfuzz Bigmuff” on the train home, as has been my compulsion for the last week. (That song “Hate the Police,” I’ve listened to it at least 75 times this week – and that line where he switches the words to “Fuck me I’m sick” – Ahhh! So awesome.)
And in my suit I fell asleep for an hour in the yard – beautiful night and cozy patio furniture. My stereo-phone on shuffle, I slept through whatever until the dog licked my wrist, shocked me awake. “Famous Blue Raincoat” was playing and I remembered the best Joan of arc song that never got recorded that was written before the first record – aka – the definitive evidence to anyone not into our band of how much more lousy we could’ve been.
Joan of arc was named Joan of arc because we needed a band name by the end of that day, whatever afternoon, 1996, Hoyne and Iowa. I listened to “Bigmouth Strikes Again,” considered Morrissey from Joan of Arc’s perspective (which became the song “Stemingway and Heinbeck.”) I listened to “Songs of Love and Hate” and between “Last Year’s Man” and “Joan of arc” it was too many references in common in an hour to not accept the cosmos were indeed giving me a sign as per what exactly this band should be called.
Lee Hazlewood and Scott Walker records remain among the primary forces in shaping every Joan of Arc song written. Make Believe not only talked about The Zombies and Harry Nilsson every time we put a song together, we even wrote a song about Harry Nilsson (“His Short Quip When Eddie’s Bothered” [Duh, get it?]) and that song about the Fleetwood Mac song “Storms.”
A little bit strange, right? Why don’t we sound like those things? I’d love - more than anything – I’d love to make a straight-up Fleetwood Mac rip-off record or Lee Hazlewood or old Scott Walker.
But you know what? If you listen closely to “Famous Blue Raincoat” there’s a splice at 4:22. That song – the standard of heavy hushed intimacy in the history of recorded music. And you know what? No way did the band play it with that structure when tracking. That second chorus is tacked on. On headphones the splice is conspicuous. I was obsessed – fixated even – on that splice in 1996.
1996: Hoyne and Iowa with Nathaniel and Ryan. Crazy in love with girlfriend in another city. Worked at the library. Fixated on that splice. Wrote and rewrote songs, never got a version good enough, all about that splice.