Tuesday, May 23, 2006


I had forgotten how much I liked the Police song Synchronicity II until I listened to it recently. (Yes, it's been Old Home Week with me and music lately.) I think it's brilliant. As is, of course, King of Pain , which I love, love, love. I have never figured out why it wasn't more popular.

I would like to take a moment to thank Sting for references to such things as Mephistopheles and the Scylla and Charybdis in his songs. Songs that were played on the radio. A lot. Do we get such literary references in popular music these days? I think not. He easily stumped me, callow youth that I was, but he also stumped my English teacher, who of course did not admit it but loftily told me to look it up, as that was the best way to learn. Indeed it was. (Not to mention the only way.)

But I don't want to be too hard on my teacher, whom we all loved. We are talking small-town Louisiana public school here, not exactly an exclusive prep school. But hey, it was free and I would say I got a pretty good general education there.

I've found Sting's more recent works to be disappointing; actually I haven't liked anything since ...Nothing Like the Sun. Admittedly I never really listened to much after that besides what I heard on the radio, but if I didn't like those songs, why should I buy an album or cassette (yes, those days, in the Before Time, in the long-long ago) on the off chance I would like any of the other songs? (Call me cheap, but I'm not exactly made of money. Keep in mind there was no burning or ripping of songs then; you were lucky if you could hold your tape recorder up to your radio and catch a decent rendition without your mom or sister bursting into the room or the DJ talking over the end and effing it all up.)

To give Sting the benefit of the doubt, maybe it's me. Maybe I changed. Maybe I just needed some time alone.

Be that as it may, I miss intelligent, if a bit pretentious, lyrics in pop songs. Imagine it, pop songs! To whom can Sting pass this literary torch? O Modern Pop Music, where is thy Sting?


A Gray said...
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A Gray said...

I love those albums! It's understandably difficult (if not impossible) for Sting to match their greatness, but I have to admit that I also like 1993's Ten Summoner's Tales.