Song scientist: The muse

April 16, 2010 at 2:27 pm Leave a comment

I have always loved dissecting songs like symbolism-heavy allegorical poetry. This interest came about when I was fourteen, baffled over Mother Love Bone‘s ‘Captain Hi-Top, the love commander’ and Nirvana‘s ‘Bruises on the fruit, tender age in bloom’.

Without much further ado (because the creativity spark fizzles out too soon, especially on a boredom-ridden afternoon), today, I’m dissecting songs inspired by people.

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High and Dry, Radiohead This classic especially abhorred by frontman Thom Yorke for being melodically similar to a Rod Stewart piece is said to be about professional stunt performer Eddie Kidd. In 1996, Kidd had a bike crash accident at the popular European motorcycle festival Bulldog Bash. As a result, Kidd was confined in a wheel chair and suffered from speech impairment. The stunt performer has remarkably recovered.

Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds, The Beatles Bed-headed beatniks and doped-up space cadets once reveled over the impression that this 1967 Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club band single is about the psychedelic drug LSD. John Lennon, however, cleared up controversies by claiming that the song is about his son Julian who had drawn a picture of a girl classmate called Lucy on a backdrop of stars. The then four-year-old entitled the drawing Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds.

Polly, Nirvana Originally titled ‘Hitchhiker’ then ‘Cracker’, the song was renamed ‘Polly’ by the band in 1989. According to the 1993 biography Come as You Are: The Story of Nirvana by Michael Azzerad, ‘Polly’ was inspired by the 1987 abduction of a 14 year old girl by criminal Gerald Friend. The victim, raped and tortured by razors and a blowtorch, managed to escape when she and her abductor pulled over for gas.

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Jeremy, Pearl Jam Written by Pearl Jam’s bassist Jeff Ament and frontman Eddie Vedder, this song was inspired by an emotionally tortured 15 year old named Jeremy Wade Delle who had commited suicide in front of his English class by means of a .357 Magnum revolver. Coming to school late one morning, he was asked to secure an admittance slip from the school office and later returned to class with the gun and the words, ‘Miss, I got what I really went for’.

MTV censored the violent imagery of the Jeremy video on the part showing Jeremy putting the gun in his mouth. Director Mark Pellington was later quoted saying–out of disappointment– that the censorship led to misinterpretation of the video’s message with the audience having the impression that Jeremy had shot his classmates and not himself. “Probably the greatest frustration I’ve ever had is that the ending [of the “Jeremy” video] is sometimes misinterpreted as that he shot his classmates.” Pellington said in one interview. “The idea is, that’s his blood on them, and they’re frozen at the moment of looking.”


So, I received an acceptance letter from the Alexis Tioseco Internship Program administrator that I was one of the 11 chosen scholars out of an overwhelming number of applicants.

I am deeply petrified and overwhelmed.

A possible Singapore move, a recent resignation from a job I’ve had kept for over a year and a 6 week comprehensive internship for a certification in Cultural Work and Arts Management for Cinema.

Now, I need sometime alone to seriously figure myself out.


Listening to Be Like That by 3 Doors Down ♫ ♪ ♫


Entry filed under: film, journals, music, thinking aloud.

Hope dangles on a string like slow spinning redemption Today is the first day of the rest of my life

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