April 12, 2011

Don't hide the snake can see you

Robert Altman, Tina Turner, October 4, 1969

* Sasha Frere-Jones on Bill Callahan. excerpt:

Over time, Callahan, who is forty-four, started to resemble a particular kind of seventies folk-and-country artist: a songwriter like Johnny Cash or Willie Nelson, who engaged in both pop and politics, and who helped create the notion of a steady-handed American song that was rooted in verse and chorus but was open to all sorts of subject matter. Callahan’s voice has become a gorgeous thing, the product of a resonant chest and even breathing, underlining strange and subtle lyrics—few singers of his cohort put their voices as high in the mix or enunciate so clearly. “I Feel Like the Mother of the World,” from “A River Ain’t Too Much to Love,” which came out in 2005, begins in a vaguely philosophical register: “Whether or not there is any type of God / I’m not supposed to say / and today / I don’t really care / God is a word / and the argument ends there / oh, do I feel like the mother of the world / with two children fighting.” The music is a fluid, humming combination of acoustic guitars, drums, and the slightly frayed chime of the hammer dulcimer. Callahan switches quickly into a casual mode for the second verse, and describes fighting with his sister. It’s beautiful, brief, and weird. Are nations just scrappy kids? Are we always children?

* "Humility—the acceptance that being human is good enough—is the embrace of ordinariness." —underlined by David Foster Wallace in his copy of Ernest Kurtz's The Spirituality of Imperfection.


Blogger Dr. The Bird Man said...

I didn't know Bill Callahan was putting out a new album. Exciting news.

1:15 PM  

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