There’s no other way to put it: We’re all going to die, some before others. And as we face mortality, we start making changes and finalising plans- the obituary, the funeral, how and where you want to lay your weary head, who you want to be beside you, what you want to leave behind, and who you want to take with you in your heart when those Bells of Rhymney start to chime- the people and those songs that have been the soundtrack to your life this time around. As Dylan wrote, “I was so much older then, I’m younger than that now”.
The news that a 16-year-old player from Nepal-Sandeep Lamichane will join the Kowloon Cantons at this weekend’s DTC Mobile Hong Kong T20 Blitz tournament has not gone unnoticed by those in this city who fear that we might be seeing Trump-like xenophobia creeping into the mentality of some.
Maybe “Fix You” was considered too sappy by some, maybe Chris Martin’s marriage to Gwyneth Paltrow was “too Hollywood” for “Rock and Roll”, whereas all the space given by the media to what they named their kids, and all that “unconscious uncoupling” Goop talk when their marriage fell apart, was probably too much for many to stomach.
But let’s not let all this other “stuff” get in the way of Coldplay being an excellent POP band that has recorded some very good POP music. Plus, I wish I could have written “Fix You” for someone who was numb being crippled inside at the time. We all need “fixing” from time to time, and “Fix You” said something about Chris Martin, the person and husband, to write the song for his wife at a time when she was having a hard time dealing with the death of her father.
It might be All About The Bass, but it’s definitely all about the hype. Funny word- hype. Once upon a Blind Faith, or that thing called a “supergroup”, or even “Dylan goes electric” was supposedly hype, and frowned upon on. But today, hype has become shtick and is celebrated and used to make the ordinaire and tedious be, well, hyped into being much more than it should be.
Whoever are in these offices have worked in this lazy, meandering way for decades. They’re like hamsters going around and around that little treadmill before its time to retire, and leave with a nice golden handshake for having survived by keeping their heads down and not rocking the boat.
This breed of worker bees will never ever change, yet, despite their total ineptitude, and what borders on scamming their artists, music publishing houses are allowed to continue as business as usual with an arrogance that’s seldom questioned by artists.
Like John Lennon and Freddy Mercury, David Bowie remains in our thoughts, because his leaving is still too raw and painful to move away from and life on Mars with Major Tom continues. Some musicians, some people, even if no longer here, just live with us for very personal reasons. Maybe we see something of us in them, or more likely, we wish we could be more like them, or actually be them. I still wish I was King Arthur, which has something to do with my Guinevere fixation, a long story that goes back to the first time I dropped something more than plates back in Camelot.
Oh no, the city’s overnight do-gooders are suddenly everywhere and, as usual, in a hurry with vacuous ideas on how to to bring the Feel Good factor back to Hong Kong. But wait: It sure looks and sounds as if the Fat Lady has not only sung, she’s left on the slow boat to China with the original Shanghai Divas.
The paradox of our time in history is that we have taller buildings but shorter tempers, wider Freeways , but narrower viewpoints. We spend more, but have less, we buy more, but enjoy less. We have bigger houses and smaller families, more conveniences, but less time. We have more degrees but less sense, more knowledge, but less judgment, more experts, yet more problems, more medicine, but less wellness.
There’s a track out called “7 Years” by Danish band Lukas Graham that’s been on Repeat at home and in my head for the past few weeks. That’s scary because the track is almost a year old and makes me concerned that I’m letting too much clutter into my life and not enough music- good music. This is not the person I think I am. Or was or want to be.
Like Hozier’s “Take Me To The Church”, “7 Years” is one of those tracks that are so rare these days- melodic, with intelligent lyrics and performed by an extremely tight band with real raw emotion in the vocals of singer Lukas Graham Forchhammer. Why can’t there be more music like this?