Sunday, May 7, 2017

Deeper Meanings

I’m thinking about this song and how depressing it is. The lyrical content is what I am talking about here. I mean, the song itself is great. A treasure and a gem, the one standout tune in the 20th Century Songbook for sure. Miraculous even, for it has given me the gift of knowledge with regards to playing piano music, no, I mean what the song is about - this is what’s sad, very sad, you see it is about a loser. A sad and lonely loser at love who has lost out so bad he had to leave town in shame. I guess someone was fucking around or something. Whatever the case he’s suckered. The guy in the song is relegated to this freeze-dried Middle America that only exists for fucked-out truckers and spent meth heads. Vacant air conditioned highways and the sort. The lyrics rely heavily on the classic top 40 poetic device of using a radio dial to describe the endless wanderings of this broken hearted loser. Deep down he knows that it was “never meant to be” but he is still doomed to an existence haunting cheap hotel rooms where he endlessly packs, then unpacks his luggage, manically subverting his anxieties into an obsessive-compulsive disorder. If that weren’t harrowing enough of an emotional roller-coaster ride for the listener, the ending passage creates this ominous foreshadowing of false hopes and impotent yearnings as he asks ”maybe, just maybe…once in a while…” knowing full well that she has already forgotten him, never really cared to begin with, and will never ever think of him again, not even occasionally, but still he clings to his delusional state of denial, which makes him doubly cursed. It’s so dark and nihilistic; almost anti-human. It is one of the best depictions of the breakdown of sanity in the first person view of an afflicted mind. The song tears the emotional equilibrium to pieces. To hear it, puts one right into the same miserable state of existential angst as the protagonist. You wonder if the lyricist did not have sadistic intent, it is that effective in cursing the listener’s psyche, destroying their mental and emotional well-being. It’s like a kick in the stomach, truly gut-wrenching. This is possibly the greatest song that has ever appeared at the library in the piano books section. Even though it is not containing happy or joyful themes, one can redeem some positivism from it by learning from the hard and cruel lessons of its beleaguered singer…this being; never go to that Dark Cincinnati of The Soul for you may never return and live to see tomorrow. This can ultimately produce joy in the listener because thankfully you yourself are not so romantically doomed to total rejection and dejection and you can feel relief for this. Ultimately I take this song as a warning. It is a warning to me personally to not be taken up by the Passions and to stay diligent to my piano lessons and my piano lessons only. In this respect it is a masterpiece of meta-didactics for the piano because by learning it I learn to learn the piano even more so, and the more I learn the more I am compelled to learn further. If I keep mastering this one song, eventually I will master all of the piano, all learning, and ultimately the entirety of the universe itself.

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