My new crush: Canasta (the band, not the card game).

Remember back when I posted about Canasta? Don’t lie, I can see you through the screen.

Anyway, since that post went up two weeks ago, I’ve listened to one or both of their albums nearly every day.

I only caught the very end of their set on the night of which I wrote (back when I posted about Canasta), but between the energy they brought, and what keeps coming off those two discs, they’ve actually, genuinely morphed into one of my favorite bands. Just like *that*! They’ll be performing at The Taste of Chicago on July 13, and I’m distraught that I won’t get to see them any earlier (well, maybe not distraught. Disappointed). (But very disappointed!).

This doesn’t happen to me very often — indeed, I can remember exactly one other case in which I went into a show essentially blind, and emerged an uber-fan, and that was in Israel and the artist was Jeremy (aka: Irmi) Kaplan. And it was a very long time ago.

But I mostly didn’t understand the words at first– it was a little like how I’ve found that I listen to REM: That one voice is among the musical elements, another of the instruments, the energy and the timbre of it, its depths and richness, but actual understanding? Pretty much just occasional words and phrases.

Which is odd, because unlike Michael Stipe, Canasta’s Matt Priest sings pretty dang clearly.

Und zo! I quickly came to understand! And though I didn’t know this when I posted it two weeks ago, “Microphone Song” pretty neatly sums up my experience as a writer (even though Priest writes lyrics [obvs], and I don’t [also obvs]. You kind of have to rejigger two or three lines to make it work, but trust me, it totally works).

So here are the lyrics, followed again by the video. And really — check them out. They’re pretty ding-dang fab.

MICROPHONE SONG

So, here I sit
Pen hangs forever an inch above the page
Feels just like schoolwork
Thought I’d be through with all that by this age
Caffeinated ideas race to and fro I can’t catch even one
Two hours to go
Someone remind me that this should be fun

I’m tired of trying
To express what’s not there
Forming opinions worthy to share
I’ve got things I’m thinking but why would you care?
Who am I?

Cuz on the ki-ki-kinda day like today
When I-I-I’ve got nothing to say
I feel that my-my-my words get in the way
Of what the fi-fi-five of them are trying to play
So please do-do-don’t pay attention to me
Cuz I’m go-go-goin’ broke lyrically
And if a po-po-poet’s what I wanted to be
A micropho-pho-phone’s not something I’d need
C’mon!

Still here I sit
Minutes to go and I’m losing my cool
I start to resent
All those of you who swear by the rule
That great rock n roll isn’t just something you pick up and play
But great rock n roll should always have something of value to say

Cuz on the ki-ki-kinda day like today
When I-I-I’ve got nothing to say
I feel that my-my-my words get in the way
Of what the fi-fi-five of them are trying to play
So please do-do-don’t pay attention to me
Cuz I’m go-go-goin’ broke lyrically
And if a po-po-poet’s what I wanted to be
A micropho-pho-phone’s not something I’d need
C’mon!

2 Comments

  1. Thanks for the kind words, Emily! Although this is the *official* music video for “Microphone Song” – http://youtu.be/5R-F1TerkQU. The one you posted was created by a fan…

    • Oh my goodness, thank you so much for stopping by, and leaving the right video! I can’t imagine why I didn’t see it, and I’ll post it in a correction post right away (thus allowing me to post about your band again!)

      We’re very much looking forward to the show on July 13th, and I do hope that someday, I’ll be blasting your discs and someone in the band will hear it and smile. : )

      Thank you!!