If you’ve wandered into Flutter in the last two weeks, it’s likely you heard either Nick Cave or the Magnetic Fields playing. Since the last two blog posts have praised the former, I’ll dedicate this one largely to Stephin Merritt, the genius behind the Magnetic Fields, the Gothic Archies, the 6ths and dozens of other projects. Every time I put on his music it’s guaranteed I’ll be asked what’s playing, and twice I’ve had people come in and pick up one of the gorgeous accordions and PLAY ALONG to a song! Seriously. The actual accordion player in Magnetic Fields is Lemony Snicket, the writer of the macabre “Series of Unfortunate Events” books. The music is so catchy and amazing, I mean really, really perfect: orchestral swells right where they should be, twangy guitar, soaring whistly synth; it’s like he’s trying to prove he can make a great pop song from the scraps of any musical genre. The music is what keeps it endlessly engaging, but the lyrics take it to another level of amazing. Some of the songs exactly capture romantic exultation ( “grand pianos crash together when my boy walks down the street”), or they toy with prose or cowboy storytelling. He’s written whole songs dedicated to brilliant analogies (“love is like jazz”, “love is like a bottle of gin”, “a pretty girl is like…”). Most of the songs I referenced above are from the excellent “69 love songs”, which is literally that, but the other albums are great, too. In fact, I used to like the other albums more, but the love songs grew on me. They did more than grow on me, they tattooed me. Below is the guitar tablature for “a pretty girl is like…”, and you can find more chords and lyrics online. It’s such a good feeling to bash out your favorite song, whether in a group or all by your lonesome, and most of them have the same five easy chords. I started printing a binder full of bowie and kinks songs that will keep me entertained for a long time. Another fun thing is to replace the word “love” with “lunch” in a song. You can sing hits like “tainted lunch”, “the back of lunch”, “all is full of lunch”, “our lunch is alive”, “i want your lunch”… endlessly amusing, yeah?
- sara kolp
A Pretty Girl is Like…
A pretty girl is like a minstrel show
It makes you laugh
It makes you cry
It just isn’t the same on radio
C:032010 G C
It’s all about the makeup and the dancing
and the Oh,
a pretty girl is like a violent crime
If you do it wrong you could do time
but if you do it right it is sublime
so in love with you, girl,
it’s like I’m on the moon
I can’t really breathe, but I feel lighter
A melody is like a pretty girl
Who cares if it’s
the dumbest in the world
It’s all about the way that it unfurls
A pretty girl is like a pretty girl
Ok…I said I would join in from time to time….
Yes, Nick was amazing on Monday night! It’s obviously a show and performance that will stay with me (and Susan) for awhile. I was so pleased to see so many Flutter customers and friends at the show. It’s been a steady stream of folks coming into the shop this week to say…hey I saw you at the show and it was so amazing and it took 2
days to get my hearing back!
Susan touched on the “old thing”….I think that was the beauty of the show for so many of us. It didn’t feel old…it felt soulful and fresh and quite inspiring to hear the new songs off his latest and to see the old songs that I’ve listened to for years come to life before me. It did take me back to years earlier when shows were the priority of my life, but I didn’t feel 25 again. I felt 40 and inspired (which by the way is so much better!)….it was amazing!
Ok…enough about NICK!!!
Many know that the shop gets rearranged into the wee hours of the night to the tunes of Nick. I usually need a little something to keep me going like “Your Funeral My Trial” or “Let Love In”. But no one can sing the sweetest of ballads like Nick Cave.
Here’s one of my favorites…Far From Me
Oh, inspiration! It’s been a good week for it. Monday evening was spent with Cindy and other good friends at the Nick Cave show at the Crystal Ballroom. Doesn’t it just sound romantic? A dance floor beautiful chandeliers, murals, a balcony. I have to say it was a fabulous place, and that it’s still in it’s full glory is really something to be said for the owners. So many times old things get tossed out for the new. The idea that when something gets old and chipped up that it’s no longer attractive is just sad. I mean, look at Nick Cave. He said he was “disgracefully old” Monday night. It was his 51st birthday. I wouldn’t throw him out, no, no, no! I was not disappointed, and I don’t think many were. He rocked like he was 24. So see, when a thing seems old to one person, it can actually still hold a lot of joy and add fullness to another. So thank you Nick for reminding us that old stuff is way cool. Oh, and Flutter as always for helping old things get the respect and limelight they deserve!
How does this all tie in with my sewing and designing gig? Nick Cave You say? I thought you were supposed to write about interior stuff and what cool things your making, you say.
Well, how about next week. I just want to languish in the revelry that was Monday night. A night that made this old thing feel young again!
I know it’s not specifically appropriate but this song is so good that I have to pass it on. Maybe it’s the chill in the air that calls for smoky jazz and tight wool coats. It could be that the combination of sultry and pensive reminded me of Flutter. It’s a clip from a movie I really should find, I bet I’d like it. Lately the colder nights have me feeling like I’m allowed to watch more movies. I always want to recycle the same handful of favorites discovered in my teens, revisiting them because of their familiarity and their context in my own history; dorky movies like “what’s new, pussycat?” or classics like “the third man”. I have a lot of catching up to do when it comes to movies, which is exciting. For some reason I have this problem where I can never pick out a movie, and if I do I’ll often rent it and turn it in late, unwatched. It’s an expensive and very stupid habit, I know. I recently had Antonioni’s “blow up” borrowed from the library for 4 months and I never watched it. It’s not because I have a poor attention span, I think it’s just bad time management. Back when I had a computer, I’d get a cheap and quick film fix by watching Svankmajer stop action movies on you tube, or by digging up old music videos like the one above. This awesome lady who comes into Flutter told me about a stop action movie she’s working on, based on a Neil Gaiman comic. My daughter Lola read it, she told me it’s great. The characters in the movie are all handmade, jointed puppets. Somebody even made teeny knit tights for one of the dolls! Can you imagine knitting doll’s tights with pins and floss? I can hardly imagine knitting anything. Perhaps that is another cold weather activity for me to look forward to. P.S., for anyone learning french, the song’s title means “requiem for a jerk”.
I, like Sarah, adore the fall! The leaves changing color, the smell of the air, warm days and cool nights. Halloween is just around the corner. Days spent inside. What’s not to like?
Oh yeah, the rain. Most folks don’t care for the eight months of rain we get here in the great northwest. I truly happily anticipate the rain. I do. It means it’s time for me to get going on projects without any regret for a lost sunny day! Summers great, but I don’t get much work done. In the fall, I get out all my new old favorite music( I have a feeling it’s Nick Cave!) and sit in my sewing room pouring over magazines and fabrics. FABRICS. MMMMmmm. Magazines. Mmmmm.
A collaborator and I recently met over a drink to talk about our newest project for Cindy’s shop. Sari, my partner in fabric crimes who is not Sarah my partner in blogging, is a very talented silk screen artist.
We talked about teal and black silk with lanterns printed on them. We talked about chrysanthemums and peacock feathers on hot pink silk. We also talked about Gossip Girl, but that’s a discussion for another day! We are getting this project off the ground very soon. Have to get her that pink silk so she can print it up for drapery panels!
I can’t wait to share…