to some it doesn't happen often, and i am definitely among them. i think its fair to say that the rigors of daily living can only prepare you so well for such an occurrence, but i suppose that is a big part of why we're here, living. the 'it' of human experience i'm alluding to is the rarity of becoming briefly obsessed with a song you would typically dismiss simply on premise. these songs stop life in its steady gait. the sum of everything you thought that you knew previously microscopes into a new perspective, demanding thought. how do you recognize a fleeing musical obsession? when you are so overcome by the preoccupation that blood surging through the ravines and canals of your veins carries its tune and you find yourself drawn to the alabaster rim of the bathroom sink to splash cool water across your face, that is when you know.
and above all, you can't help but sing along.
Petrarchan conceits, Vivaldian melodies and Shakespearean emotion coalesce in just under six minutes of splendor. your pores swell to welcome the new beautiful sound into your very flesh and bone. it is a song of momentary incomparability, a ditty seemingly without the temporal grounding of known instrumentation, not heavenly, but bizarrely magical. each verse dissects your sensibilities; for it is a musical autopsy whimsically fiddling with your heart, mind and the enclave of your intestines where butterflies reside.
today, a predictably episodic bluegrass foray into wartime emotion got me. the dixie chicks got me.
on "traveling soldier" the banjo and violin float just beneath the beautiful high harmonies as the song addresses the delicate heartache of a small town gal who falls for the all-american boy off to deal with Victor Charlie and his communist bullying. the song builds towards an (admittedly) cliche marching cadence near its conclusion with her weeping beneath the bleachers of the football stadium at the loss of her beau. somehow the impermeable fortress of my usually wrought iron cynicism was bypassed and i found myself chiming in, even annunciating Vietnam as "vee-et-namm". i dunno, maybe it was just being in the right/wrong mood at the right/wrong moment, but i must have listened to that jewel seven or eight times today.
The Dixie Chicks - "Traveling Soldier" (mp3)
6 months ago