Tuesday, September 16, 2008

"All She Wrote" / Ray Davies

Finally, the Great Music Transfer is finished!

But now, alas, I still have to redo my playlists. If you're a little OCD like I am, you know how important it is to get those playlists just right. I had 130 of them, and they were good. I may not replicate all of them, though, because making them up is half the fun -- why not do some new ones while I'm at it?

So here's the first new playlist I've invented. A lot of these songs I've written about on here already; they're all about break-ups of one sort or another, each one capturing its own sliver of heart-wrenching pain. The first three are all snide little dialogues taken from the last stages of a crumbling relationship:
1. Is That Love -- Squeeze
2. Don't Wait Up -- Dr. Feelgood
3. Remain Silent -- Keb' Mo'

Then here come three that represent that bitter moment when you realize you've given up on saving things:
4. Angel/Asshole -- Jill Sobule
5. Crawl Back (Under My Stone) -- Richard Thompson
6. She's Already Made Up Her Mind -- Lyle Lovett
followed by the moment of truth, the actual confrontation -- or in these two cases, cowardly break-ups by letter:
7. All She Wrote -- Ray Davies
8. Hold Me Down -- Motion City Soundtrack
Ray's is bad enough, the reaction of the stunned recipient of such a letter -- but MCS's is even more squirm-inducing, being from the standpoint of the person who wrote the letter, and knows how despicable he is for doing so.

At the middle is the depths of self-pity and pain, the gloriously miserable
9. Solo (So Low) -- Joe Jackson
a song which absolutely shatters me every time I hear it. It's followed by three morose little mini-dramas, describing the last moments of packing to go:
10. Things We Never Said -- Thea Gilmore
11. Really Glad You Came -- Ian Dury & the Blockheads
12. Property -- The Kinks
Jeez, those three, one after the other, are like, whew! And then comes a melancholy drive past the old house, from someone's who's not healed yet:
13. Where Home Used to Be -- Marshall Crenshaw

And finally, to emerge from all this pain and misery, three brilliant comic mopes from two masters of the Lovable Loser song:
14. I'm a Mess -- Nick Lowe
15. I Don't Even Try -- John Hiatt
16. Lately I've Let Things Slide -- Nick Lowe
BTW, I've always wondered if Nick got the idea for his song from John's , which was written earlier, I think. Not that Nick Lowe ever stole any ideas from anybody, ever!

Well, there it is. Anybody out there know enough of those songs to tell me if this playlist works for you?

9 comments:

Crafty said...

Not sure where it fits, but Shotgun Down the Avalanche is one that I've always liked in this "genre" (probably goes in group 2):

"But the past is stronger than my will to forgive
Forgive you or myself, I don't know"

I would suggest "I Live on a Battlefield", but Nick is already well represented.

I'm Not Angry--Elvis Costello

Anonymous said...

No, no-one knows enough of these songs to say if it's a good playlist or not. You are SO far ahead of us mere mortals in all the really osbscure stuff you buy. It's amazing!

Holly A Hughes said...

"I'm Not Angry" is a good one -- I'm sure once I think about it, there'll be tons of EC stuff to add to this list. Elvis has always been a reliable source of emotional angst and hostility.

Obscure stuff? Nah, not really, it's all tapping into the same musical DNA, I'm afraid. It's true, though, that most of these artists could, er, use more exposure!

Uncle E said...

Any playlist with Squeeze on it is ok w/ me. I would've added "Guess I'm Doin' Fine" from Beck though. Probably one of the finest broken heart albums of all time...

Uncle E said...

...from Sea Change, that is!

Natsthename said...

I'm also extremely OCD when it comes to playlists. I freaked when my computer crashed..did I care about all of my documents? No. I cared about the playlists I had constructed!

Mat Brewster said...

I recently had an external drive die on me (I guess I killed it as I did drop it hard on the cold ground, but I like to pretend it was mutiny and it took a suicidal dive out of my hand.) That drive had all my music so I've been manually inputting all my CDs back into the new external.

Which is to say I feel your pain, and OCD joy at rediscovering new-old music I had forgotten about.

The playlists though, oh geezum, I don't know when I'll ever get those back.

Carabella said...

The late great Kirsty Maccoll penned some of the most heart rending break up songs about. "Titanic Days" "Tomorrow Never Comes" "The Last Day of Summer" "We'll Never Pass this Way Again" and "Don't Go Home" come first to mind. The album, Titanic Days is self described as her "sad divorce album" which came out after her split with Steve Lillywhite. Great voice and handy with a turn of phrase. She was admired by Nick Lowe, Marshall Crenshaw, Billy Bragg and Morrisey to name a few.

Holly A Hughes said...

Thanks for the tip -- I've never known where to start with Kirsty MacColl, and so many people whose taste I admire rave about her. A sad divorce album sounds like just the ticket!