Walkin’ Too (Much)!

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Chris

Chris lives in Austin, TX, where he once shook Willie Nelson's hand.

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26 Responses

  1. Avatar Maribou says:

    So looking forward to watching this tomorrow. Thought of you earlier tonight (before I’d seen this) because youtube decided the ad it needed to show me before a music video was…. another video… by a band I sometimes like. Ok, ad algorithms, do more of that, I guess.

    Anyway, the video was Fitz and the Tantrum’s Walker. How funny that you were posting this at almost the same time.

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  2. Avatar Glyph says:

    Oh great. As though a 4-day weekend wasn’t going to sap my productivity enough today. What’sa matta wit’chu boy?

    How great is it that the Stones actually were able to make disco sound kind of dangerous; like there’s a switchblade in the back pocket of those polyester pants? In my retail job in college, the stockroom radio’d usually get flipped back and forth between the classic rock station and the college stations (with occasional stops at Art Bell’s show) and I definitely remember “Miss You” always getting a lot of employee participation, lots of funky strutting and “hoo-ing”.

    Ministry also produced fun sing-alongs – especially when a customer stuck his head back through the swinging doors to see what was taking so long, and you were caught belting out “THIEVES! LIARS!”

    A good friend of mine can’t stand New Order. Specifically, “Temptation”. The falsetto “oooh’s” get to him something fierce (he was a metal kid growing up, and that stuff don’t fly).

    Whereas I would happily listen to it on a 24-hour loop; and if, at the end of that loop, aliens landed and asked me to explain “this human emotion you call ‘joy'”, I’d probably just cue it up all over again.

    “Box Elder” is great not just for its passive-aggressive kiss-off (“I’ve got a lot of good things coming my way /
    And I’m afraid to say that you’re not one of them”), but the whole “I’m gettin’ outta this podunk town and heading for the bright lights of the big city (of…Box Elder, MO?!?)!”

    (I’ve always thought Jack White’s “Seven Nation Army” promise/threat to head to Wichita was sort of similar).

    Wedding Present did a decent cover of “Box Elder” back in the day (though he cleans up the cursing):
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    • Avatar Chris says:

      I’m not sure any of my close friends or family really like New Order, and some of them (R particularly) actively revile them. They really do seem to be as divisive as Neil Diamond. Oh, and while I love “Temptation,” my 24-hour repeat New Order song is “Ceremony.”

      I’m trying to think of the songs that we used to all sing along to when I worked at Taco Bell in college and opened with a few of my high school friends on Sunday mornings. It would be just 4 of us, all guys, all of whom had known each other since at least 1st grade, singing at the top of our lungs. I remember Talk Talk’s “It’s My Life,” which was on Taco Bell’s piped-in playlist, Talking Head’s “Psycho Killer,” and Metallica’s “One” (or it might have been “For Whom the Bell Tolls”). I’m sure there were others, though. And it probably goes without saying that not one of us could carry a tune. I don’t think we ever played any stones, but R recently said, when I was singing along to the non-disco version of “Miss You,” “White people always sing along with this song.” So it must be a thing.

      Re: “Box Elder.” Having come from a small town, I am an active seeker of songs about getting’ the fish out of them, in reality or in one’s dreams (‘cause lord knows I dreamt of leaving a lot before I was able to do so), and also coming back, because you inevitably do, and inevitably you and the town have moved on from each other, and there’s a real feeling of loss. This is why, whatever I may think of Pearl Jam at large, “Elderly Woman Behind a Counter in a Small Town” is an awesome song. “Box Elder” definitely gets the part about feeling like you have to get rid of the people to get rid of the town right, too. Oh, and I get the leaving this Podunk town for “Box Elder, M.O.” as moving up in the world. When I was young, I thought Murfreesboro, TN was a big city. Or at least a real city.

      Also this (which Will will appreciate, if he finds his way down here):

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      • Avatar Glyph says:

        I love “Ceremony”, probably even more than I love “Temptation” (and I love “Temptation” a lot); but I probably wouldn’t loop “Ceremony”, it would seem wrong somehow; I play it, shiver at its perfection, then put it back on the shelf in eager anticipation of the next time.

        “Ceremony” is more of a sculpture to me; it’s utterly singular and structurally magnificent and captivating in isolation, without distraction (also, people who try to be hip and claim the original JD version is superior are, simply, wrong – but that’s a different discussion).

        “Temptation” is an ever-shifting symphony.

        In college a guy we knew got a job at the Taco Bell. On his first day on the job, a couple friends pulled through the drive-through window where he was working, to mess with him; they informed him that they were headed over to the coast for the afternoon, and they had an extra surfboard on the roof and an extra wetsuit in the trunk….

        …and he looked around, ripped off his headset, and dove through the drive-through window into the open car window, still wearing his TB uniform, shouting “go, GO!”

        I doubt he ever regretted that decision.Report

  3. Avatar Glyph says:

    Walkin’, Glyph Edition:

    (Man, remember when Robert Smith didn’t look like he’d eaten 3 Robert Smiths, and was taking dodgy acid and making awesome lo-fi “Blue Monday” ripoffs?)

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    • Avatar Chris says:

      I listened to that Tycho song and created a Tycho Pandora station, and the first song that popped up was “A Walk.” Once again, Jung had a word…Report

    • Avatar Chris says:

      Oh, a couple other things: First, that Patsy Cline song has a great deal of sentimental value, because I remember my father singing it when I was a little kid. Second, but have I ever mentioned how much I love Son House? There’s an era of the blues, from the teens through the 30s (maybe into the 40s), that I think is pretty much perfect music. I mean that quite literally: it would be impossible for it to be any better than it is. It’s a refined and subtly sophisticated folk music without any pretense or dilution through the culture industry, often played by incredible musicians, in an era of economic, social, and cultural transitions that made the blues that arose out of the areas bordering the Mississippi almost too timely to be real. I sometimes wish we’d had better recording techniques for those artists back then, and I sometimes think that would have defeated the purpose.Report

      • Avatar Glyph says:

        Son House is awesome. Did you ever listen to any of those Fat Possum acts that were carrying that Delta Blues tradition on, like RL Burnside etc.? If I ever get one of the very first posts I wanted to do whipped into some sort of readable shape, some of that stuff would feature.

        I sometimes wish we’d had better recording techniques for those artists back then, and I sometimes think that would have defeated the purpose.

        Most definitely it would have defeated it, at least for us in the present day; from our POV that murk is an essential part of the recording’s emotional effect, not just an unfortunate artifact of the technology of the time.

        And anyway, “clearer” is not always “better” when it comes to music or film – I have a demo version of the Stones’ “All Down the Line” (I’m not even sure if it’s Charlie playing, or a drum machine), and the murk makes the song (in part because our brains fill in the “missing” pieces; we’re puzzle-solvers). That’s another one I’d loop.Report

  4. Avatar Glyph says:

    Man, now I want to do more Walkin’ songs.

    The Hives, imitating Devo:

    Brilliant video:

    What is Sting wearing? Ah, the 80’s:

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  5. Avatar Glyph says:

    Two more.

    I have gotta get to work.

    Yes, it IS a CCR cover:

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  6. Avatar Maribou says:

    Completely not worthy.

    But here is one more walking song I love:

    “… and all you want to do is walk / it’s all you want to do, do / and this is how the summer ends …”

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    • Avatar Glyph says:

      Here’s a song I really like but didn’t include before because it didn’t have it in the title.

      It’s really pretty, and it captures that uncertain (and maybe unrequited) beginning-crush feeling really well.

      “I’ve been walking / I’ve been thinking / I’ve been looking at you / sideways”

      “I have no problems / dipping in my feet / but the trouble comes when I have to jump / and all the reasons / not to, seem pretty good / at the time”Report

    • Avatar Chris says:

      Damn. That one took me completely by surprise. Thank you for it.

      And you know, I was thinking you can’t walk to this, and then all of the sudden it became a great song to walk to.Report

  7. Avatar Maribou says:

    Oh, and I spend a lot of time listening to this one while I walk, too:

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