The Explanation
(for those who require one)

And, of course, that is what all of this is -- all of this: the one song, ever changing, ever reincarnated, that speaks somehow from and to and for that which is ineffable within us and without us, that is both prayer and deliverance, folly and wisdom, that inspires us to dance or smile or simply to go on, senselessly, incomprehensibly, beatifically, in the face of mortality and the truth that our lives are more ill-writ, ill-rhymed and fleeting than any song, except perhaps those songs -- that song, endlesly reincarnated -- born of that truth, be it the moon and June of that truth, or the wordless blue moan, or the rotgut or the elegant poetry of it. That nameless black-hulled ship of Ulysses, that long black train, that Terraplane, that mystery train, that Rocket '88', that Buick 6 -- same journey, same miracle, same end and endlessness."
-- Nick Tosches, Where Dead Voices Gather

Musical Indulgence #1

Medley: Walk Right Back/Cathy's Clown/Let the Good Times Roll
(Harry Nilsson; 1971)

I resolved, when I decided to start posting videos on this blog, that I wouldn't post musical performances; for two reasons: First, everyone does it. Second, I could easily . . . very very easily . . . go overboard and post them by the dozens if I followed my heart. Well, I'm going to break that resolution now, after holding onto it for three whole months (though I'll spare our visitors a raft of these; I can at least do that), and what better artist to break such a resolution, don't you know, than one of the great Pop music subversives (and true geniuses), the late Harry Nilsson.

This sublime medley comes from a 1971 BBC Television broadcast, The Music of Nilsson and, as you'll soon see, was a tad more creatively wrought than your typical TV force-march through the hits.

So I hope you'll forgive this periodic indulgence, friends and neighbors, brothers and sisters, comrades-in-arms, and enjoy.


Anonymous said...

That was cool!

swac said...

Nilsson means never having to say you're sorry.

Richard Gibson said...


There is another on You Tube; 'Coconut' with Nilsson in a Gorilla costume...I wonder if there are any clips of the Lennon/Nilsson infamous lost weekend...

I think I'll go home and listen to 'Pussy Cats'.

That Little Round-Headed Boy said...

Man! I was saving this Nilsson clip for one of my YouTube Friday tributes. Oh, well. Harry deserves all the attention he can get. I published a tribute to him a couple of years ago, and was surprised at the e-mails I got from all over the world. Harryheads are very loyal.

Tom Sutpen said...

Damn. Sorry about the timing, lrhb. Obviously, had I known, I would have waited to post it.

I have to admit, I've been on the business end of this a couple of times myself. I don't know if it's a consequence of my having similar tastes to a number of my fellow bloggers, or the fact that there's more limits on the material we can provide than we might have realized. Either way, I know how irritating it can be.