Saturday, 18 July 2015

Forever Young (Your Only Choice)

"Killing In The Name Of" by Rage Against the Machine
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tA7d0OYg0rI
I live alone in a sixth-floor apartment contained inside an apartment building located above and beside a riverside city park that for the last four days has been "rocked." That's what the goings-on have been called for the last several civic years: "Rock the Park." You know: loud, semi-competent, young guitar players and drummers and singers doing their over-amplified thing in front of intoxicated young citizens, very few of whom (you gotta figure) have ever heard (or heard of, probably) Ella Fitzgerald or Ray Charles or Frank Sinatra, or any other singer who knows that singing is really just fancy talking, usually about something really happy or really sad, in a listenable register.

But I have loved every atonal, wincingly noisy minute of it. It does me good, I think, to be so close to the fuck-you-Death energy of young people, because sometimes it can result in my snooping my way through the streetscape of youth and remembering the great, politically and musically sophisticated song on the marquee. Here are its last eighteen lines (the first eight spoken, the rest of 'em sung and screamed: "Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me/Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me/Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me/Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me/Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me/Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me/Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me/Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me!/ Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me!/Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me!/Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me!/Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me!/Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me!/Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me!/Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me!/Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me!/Motherfucker!/ Uh! Uh! Uh! . . .") 

I can scarcely remember what those lines feel like (never heard 'em when I was actually young), but I contend that they will lift every neck (even old ones) into a restorative, rhythmic bobbing and nodding that says, over and over again, Yes.

This band, when it made this song, was very young, very honest, very optimistic, very competent -- i.e., they fucking rocked. I hope they come to the park close to where I live next year.


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