Thursday, September 29, 2016

Throwback Thursday - “Wake Me Up When September Ends” by Green Day

     The song writing was motivated by a September 1982 event, while the video was motivated by a September 2001 event. And in the below Soundcloud version of “Wake Me Up When September Ends,” the performance is dedicated to a September 2004 event (Johnny Ramone's death).
     “Wake Me Up When September Ends” was written by the frontman of Green Day (Billie Joe Armstrong) in memory of his father, who lost his battle with cancer on September 1, 1982. Billie Joe was ten years old at the time. Sources assert that after the funeral, Billie Joe locked himself in his room and told his family, “Wake me up when September ends.” 
     The lyrics include “Like my father’s come to pass, seven years has gone so fast.” Seven years after his father’s passing, Billie Joe joined forces with bandmate Mike Dirnt under their original band name, Sweet Children. The later statement “Like my father's come to pass, twenty years has gone so fast” is a reference to the anniversary at the writing of the song. It was written in 2002, but released two years later.


Other songs that were motivated by the deaths of their fathers include:
“Sometimes You Can’t Make It on Your Own” by U2/Bono
"Hurt" by Christina Aguilera
“Living Years” by Mike and the Mechanics
“Leader of the Band” by Dan Fogelberg
“Father” by Demi Lovato

     The video for “Wake Me Up When September Ends” was intended to reflect the reaction to the September 11, 2001 attack on the Twin Towers, as well as the television recruiting for soldiers. Despite vowing to never leave her, the man volunteers for the armed forces. She is disappointed by his decision and his lack of disclosure to her. He is disappointed by her inability to recognize that his decision was based on protecting her. 


Lyrics of “Wake Me Up When September Ends” by Green Day
Summer has come and passed
The innocent can never last
Wake me up when September ends.

Like my father’s come to pass
Seven years has gone so fast
Wake me up when September ends.

Here comes the rain again
Falling from the stars
Drenched in my pain again
Becoming who we are

As my memory rests
But never forgets what I lost
Wake me up when September ends

Summer has come and passed
The innocent can never last
Wake me up when September ends

Ring out the bells again
Like we did when spring began
Wake me up when September ends

Here comes the rain again
Falling from the stars
Drenched in my pain again
Becoming who we are

As my memory rests
But never forgets what I lost
Wake me up when September ends

Summer has come and passed
The innocent can never last
Wake me up when September ends

Like my father's come to pass
Twenty years has gone so fast
Wake me up when September ends
Wake me up when September ends
Wake me up when September ends

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

“Never Go To Sleep” by Hey Way – A Song Review

     If there are still music lovers who hold the position that Dream Pop lacks substance, they would be well served to loop “Never Go To Sleep.” It’s not our “go to” genre, but it has its treasures. This is one.
     The song is on the self-titled album of Hey Way. As a whole, “Never Go To Sleep” isn’t minimalistic, but that’s a fair description of the individual parts. As examples, the drums and piano instrumentally drive the song during the first segment, but each has a beauty in its simplicity. Much later, the guitar enters with a shoegaze vibe, without the highly dynamic processing that is too often associated with the sound.

     Hey Way is the duo of Søren Corneliussen and Hasse Mydtskov. In a prior life, they were part of the band Kissaway Trail. Their hometown is Odense, Denmark.
     “Never Go To Sleep” by Hey Way

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

“Jailbird” by Shells – A Song Review

    With a contrast between the lyrical message and instrumental support, Shells released “Jailbird.” Lyrically, the song is centered around a typically low point, namely a relationship breakup. In comparison, the instruments live in upper frequencies. Tales of a breakup are well suited for the cello. No cellos in “Jailbird.” The featured instrument is the harp, which is better suited for the angelic messaging. Separating the voices from the lyrics they carry, angelic becomes an appropriate description. Shells' use of voice quiver and the backing vocals are pure and innocent, even while claiming:
All I know is I won’t grow,
Being captive to your control.” 

     Shells is scheduled to release an EP on November 25, 2016. The EP will be entitlesd “SHAPES.”
     “Jailbird” by Shells