Thursday, September 23, 2010

Music for the Word Nerd's Soul

I may not do straight poetry, but put it to music and you've got me. There are some songs that just thrill me as a writer. I'm not talking about the muse-stirring songs, but ones whose lyrics make the Word Lover in me jump for joy.

Some Word Nerd gems:

"Paralyzer" by Finger Eleven. I <3 style="font-style: italic;">pretentious in the lyrics.

"Now or Never" by Josh Groban. Not even mentioning his divine voice, just this line should do it: The tattered thought balloons above our heads sinking in the weight of all we need to say. Sigh. (If you click on the YouTube link the song actually starts at about the two minute point.)

Several songs by Sting/The Police are wonderful, but what do you expect from a man who was an English teacher before a musician? I like "Wrapped Around Your Finger." Caught between the Scylla and Charybdis. A literary reference even! *squee*(Be kind to the video. Remember it was from the early 80s.)

Or Fortress Around Your Heart which has some great lyrics, including the word chasm. That's just a fun word to say: chasm, chasm, chasm. It's almost as fun to say as schism.

Then there's One Week by Bare Naked Ladies, which is pure fun wordy randomness. My favorite line might be I'd like a stinkin' achin' shake I like vanilla, it's the finest of the flavors Gotta see the show 'cause then you'll know The vertigo is gonna grow 'Cause it's so dangerous You'll have to sign a waiver. (Technically it's more than one line but yousayitalltogetherwithoutbreathingsothatmakesitonephraseright?)

The song 25 or 6 to 4 by Chicago holds a special place in my heart because they managed to make a whole song about trying to think up a song. Oh, if only I could write a book about trying to write a book. (Forget the video, just listen to the song. They had to make some sort of story to the video or else it would be 4 minutes watching the group sit on the floor in the middle of the night. 25 or 6 to 4 is the time and I think they just plugged it in the chorus.)

I know I'll think of more songs after this post is published, but I'm always open to adding to my Word Nerd playlist. What are your favorite writer songs?


Yamile said...

Josh Groban's Awake album has some of the best lyrics I've ever heard. "So she dances." O M G! He says: "the melody is making her cry," and I kid you not, my eyes fill with tears!
Sometimes a particular song won't strike me until I listen to the words, then I'll listen to it over and over. Like "Bedshape" by Keane. The voice..., and then the part Tom says, "and you may think I don't understand things as you do...but I do..." and he sings with such longing that my eyes tear up every time. (Beauty makes me cry, OK?)
I wish you spoke Spanish, Jaime. There are some bee-U-tiful songs by La Oreja de Van Gouh (Van Gough's Ear, hahaha) and even the reaggeaton duo Wisin y Yandel, among others, of course.

Christine Fonseca said...

HA! LOVE this post! Great selections.

L.T. Elliot said...

I love "The Ocean" by the Bravery for this line:
"All of these moments are lost in time but you're caught in my head like a thorn on a vine, to forever torment me and I wonder why: Do I wish I'd never known you at all?"

As well as a song by The Postal Service called "Nothing Better." There are just too many good lyrics in that one!

Stephanie McGee said...

What a fun post! I listen to mostly movie soundtracks and show tunes so I've never paid much attention to the word choice. Mostly the story. Thanks for sharing!

Noble M Standing said...

Blue October's "Into The Ocean" has amazing poetic lines. Anything by them actually.

Others: Onerepublic, Other songs by Finger 11, Snow Patrol, Train . . .