Friday, September 07, 2012

Today, Something A Little Different

This is supposed to be a book blog, but sometimes another medium piques my literary fancy. Today, I listened to a song from the latest album by Sun Kil Moon. The band is fronted by Mark Kozelek, also of Red House Painters fame. He is known for his melancholy voice and emotionally-heavy lyrics. A few years ago he did a cover album of Modest Mouse songs, which is great! And is perfectly in line with his milieu. The song is "Sunshine in Chicago" and it shows a more reflective, humorous Kozelek. I also like the shout out to Canadians as "settlers":

 Sunshine in Chicago by Sun Kil Moon

 Pulling my guitar out of its green velvet case
A hundred settlers staring at my face
And a note from a fan Estan Young
And the note is on an inspection from Air Canada

Sitting at the Days Inn Hotel Chicago
Room 222 with the ceiling fan on low
And I just got in the door from Ontario
And I'm going home tomorrow

I took a walk down Lincoln Avenue
Got myself a foot massage and a manicure too
And I looked up at the marquee and hey was my name
Next to Julie Holland, think that was her name

Sunshine in Chicago makes me think about my dad
It was eight or nine siblings that I'm told that he had
When the summertime came his parents put him on a bus
And sent him to his uncle's in Chicago for three months

Sunshine in Chicago makes me sad
My band played here a lot in the nineties when we had
A lot of female fans and fuck they all were cute
Now I just sign posters for guys in tennis shoes

Tomorrow I'll get up at a quarter after nine
No itching or burning like I got the other time
My back it fucking hurts but otherwise I'm fine
Sunshine in Chicago

Each verse is a short story and the listener can piece together the singer's history in this business very quickly. I won't go into detail explicating the lyrics, but I was moved. You can listen to the song at Stereogum, and find out more about Mark Kozelek and Sun Kil Moon here and here.

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