Sentric Music Blog 05/03/2007 – High Ho Silver Lining!

Sentric Music Blog 05/03/2007 – High Ho Silver Lining!

My muse for the Sentric music blog this week is Kyle Falconer (who?!) of The View fame (oh, him.) the following extract taken from BBC News:

‘The View singer’s cocaine penalty
The lead singer of chart-topping rock band The View has been fined £1,000 for possessing cocaine.
Kyle Falconer’s conviction will make it “next to impossible” for the group to tour the US, his solicitor said.’

Aw bless, did someone get a little excited with their new found (and soon to be short lived) fame and thought they’d dabble in a bit of Keith Richards dandruff?

I do have a little bit of sympathy for Mr Falconer as being tempted by drugs in an industry where they are so rife is most probably an easy trap to fall into when you’re constantly being called ‘the next big thing’ and people are throwing the white stuff up your nose. But 2 weeks before South by SouthWest in Austin? One of the music industries biggest and most important conferences? One of the ways to break the elusive US market? Questions I’m sure have been fired at him by his label and his manager as we speak. Ah well, it’s a good job they’re average at best.

I touched on drugs in the music industry last week in my blog about stifled creativity and mentioned The Beatles harping on about acid within Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds. The cheeky scamps also dabbled in other substances though as the song ‘A Day in The Life’ featured on the same album contained such lyrics as ‘blew out of his mind’ and ‘I had a smoke and fell into a dream’. The BBC actually banned this song from its stations due to the weed references contained within it. Obviously times have changed and you could most probably get away with such meretricious references on Radio One these days but surely drugs within the music industry should stay behind the scenes?
The third best selling album of all time worldwide is ‘The Wall’ by Pink Floyd, which is described by Matthew Simpson as “A tale of loneliness, desperation, alienation, and drugs”. Bret Urick in 2002 wrote a complete analysis of ‘The Wall’ and within his paper he mentions drugs no less then 29 times, but although ‘The Wall’ does have strong drug references, it is in no way glamorising the effects that they can have simply because they can kill. Just ask Jimi Hendrix…

Songs such as ‘Purple Haze’ even became the street term for LSD in the late 60’s as its lyrics were, just like the Beatles, strongly hallucinogenic;

Purple haze all in my brain

Lately things just don’t seem the same

Actin’ funny, but I don’t know why

‘scuse me while I kiss the sky

Quite ironically the substances that helped Jimi Hendrix write some of his classics, were also to be the demise of his career. On September the 18th 1970, Hendrix was found dead. The cause? A drug overdose.

An incredible example of ignorance was by the BBC with the song ‘Perfect Day’ written by Lou Reed. Wikipedia (I know it’s not a ‘proper research tool’) describes the song as: ‘”Perfect Day” is an elegiac paean to Reed’s addiction to heroin.’ Basically he wrote it about how much he loved being off his chops on Pete Doherty’s best friend.

Just a perfect day,

You made me forget myself.

I thought I was someone else,

Someone good

Reed’s lyrics showed how the drug made him euphoric and feel like a better person, (a far cry from the feeling of nothingness that is described in the song ‘Heroin’ by the Velvet Underground). All in all a strong representation regarding the ups and downs of a drug addiction. The BBC however felt the song was simply about having a nice day, walking around in the park, feeding animals in zoos, laughing at monkeys and what not. So much so in fact that in 1997 they used the song as part as an advertising campaign: “In 1997 The BBC broadcasts the much praised “Perfect Day” corporate advertisement, featuring 27 artists singing lines of Lou Reed’s original. The song later becomes a fund-raising single for Children in Need.” So not only did the BBC use a pro-heroin song to advertise themselves, they also sold their version of the record to raise money for Children In Need, some of which will go towards rehabilitating teenage drug addicts! Awesome.

Now I’m not pro or anti drugs on this blog, I’m actively doing a ‘Switzterland’ and sitting on the fence. We all know that drugs kill but we also know that some of the greatest music ever made was done so under the influence of something. So I’m going to leave you with this quote:

As Barry LePatner said, “Good judgment comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgment.”

What I’m listening to this week: Journey and Aerosmith (current I know!)
Stay tuned



~ by Sentric on March 6, 2007.

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