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Friday, June 24, 2011

Friday Writing Links!

Let's start this off right! Obligatory DFW interview from way back when he was alive.
Money Quote:
"For someone like me who grew up in the sixties at the height of the Cold War and whose consciousness was formed by, “we are the good guy and there’s one great looming dark enemy and that’s the Soviet Union,” the idea of waking up to the fact that in today’s world very possibly we are the villain, we are the dark force, to begin to see ourselves a little bit through the eyes of people in other countries—you can imagine how difficult that is for Americans to do. Nevertheless, with a lot of the people that I know that’s slowly starting to happen."

The Millions brings the heat with a great article about Philip K. Dick.

I met the author of this book the other day and she is the nicest person ever. It's cool to meet people who are a little further along the path to super-stardom than me.

Speaking of superstars, if you haven't bought xtx's Normally Special then you're a certified idiot.

I'm thinking about reading James Joyce's Ulysses after finishing The Help. Does this make me a crazy person? Discuss amongst yourselves.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

The Language of Dissent

 "The Language of Dissent" is one of the only songs I ever wrote completely wasted that actually turned out half-way decent. It was late at night and I was in the basement that Oblivion practiced in, sitting on the nasty cement floor and strumming some simple chords that required about zero in the way of ability to move my fingers, which at the time was not something I could do all that well. Something in those chords, though, tickled something in my heart and it vibrated and it vibrated and I started to sing about all sorts of things that were weighing heavily on me at the time.

I was growing concerned with my penchant for writing obtuse music that, while interesting in a mental masturbation kinda way, was not doing a particularly good job of letting anyone know my true heart. This song was supposed to start turning the tide. It was supposed to let the listener know that I knew I was an over-educated little twit and that it was causing me as much pain as them. That this song would end up smack in the middle of all the lyrical pretension of The Garden in the Machine is probably ironic, since I'm not sure I understood the juxtaposition at the time, but I just wanted to be honest.

The music featured a whole lot of truly stellar performances by everyone in the band. Jason played the hell out of the piano and Ben probably laid down one of his best ever guitar solos. It's lyrical and epic and gorgeous. There's also french horns and trumpets that were arranged by some U of M students who came up with it and played it for free, and who had to deal with me nervously hovering over them throughout the entire process even though they had more classical music proficiency in their thumbs than I had in my entire body. The whole, overblown mess of this song is still so enjoyable for me to listen to. I didn't realize it was too big for its own good at the time. And now that I'm seven years older I don't care. It's like an old VHS film of yourself as a child pretending to wear your parents' clothes. For awhile it's embarrassing, and then it's sort of cute, and in the end you wind up finding out a lot about yourself.

Who am I dissenting against? Myself, of course. Always myself.

The Language of Dissent
Music and Words by  Tres Crow

All those dreams I had when I was too young to notice that they’re never coming true
All those beliefs I had when I was too young to notice the machinery
Took a stand if only for a moment to lift my lips to sweetness
And I traded my clean robe for some nice new clothes
and I’ve hidden in corners with metaphors for way too long

this world is underway
what’s past is over

all those dreams I had when I was too young to notice the machinery
all those ghosts I trusted so deeply now they are merely mist
and I traded my best parts for a good entrance
and I’ve hidden in corners with metaphors for way too long

this world is underway
what’s past is over
Lyrics reprinted by permission of Shire Reckoning Publishing House