Jan. 15th, 2011

janradder: (watt)
A Song That Makes Me Sad

As much as I've stated my utter abhorrence of 70's soft rock, I must confess I hold a warm spot in my heart for Jackson Browne, or at least certain songs by Jackson Browne. "Late for the Sky" is one of them. There's a scene in the movie Taxi Driver where Travis Bickle is watching American Bandstand. As the couples on the show hold each other and slow dance to this song, they circle a pair of empty shoes someone left on the dance floor. "Late for the Sky" is like that pair of shoes -- alone, abandoned, and empty. What separates it from the rest of the 70's soft rock genre is its emotional honesty. Here is someone at the end of a relationship, one he knows is doomed, yet he's still not quite able to pull himself from it. Instead, he lingers, even as he realizes the futility of staying. There's pain there, and loss, and sadness, and there's really no glimmer of hope at this point, or of a light beyond the situation, or even of the idea that things will be better someday. It captures that feeling of despair perfectly, and it does it beautifully. Listening to it, I can't help but feel that despair myself.


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March 2012

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