Friday, November 14, 2008

Musical Connections.....

Being an English teacher, I appreciate complete circles, fulfilled plots, things that have a beginning and an ending, connections.

I especially enjoy connections that occur in fields other than literature. I'm silly enough to think sometimes that I'm the only one who notices these subtle relationships.


Take, for example, two songs by Queen, "Bicycle Race" and "Fat-Bottomed Girls." I am not a huge Queen fan, so I don't know their lyrics inside and out, upside-down, through and through. I don't even know if these two songs originally occurred on the same album. [Okay, in looking for the album cover, I discovered they WERE released together, and in fact one was the "B" side of the other single.] Anyway, in "Bicycle Race" there is a reference to the fact that "fat bottomed girls are riding today..." and at the end of "Fat-Bottomed Girls" there is a line that says "Get on your bikes and ride!" I just think it's cool that those two songs relate to each other. Even if they WERE released back-to-back on the same single, they didn't HAVE to refer to one another.

And then there are two songs by Billy Joel, whose music I DO know inside and out, upside-down, through and through. I haven't missed a Billy Joel concert in Atlanta since 1978. I don't know whether that's cool or sad. Probably obsessive at the very least. I even celebrate Billy Joel's birthday on May 9th. He's touring with Elton John again next year, by the way, and I'm surmising it's in celebration of his 60th birthday.

These two songs both appear on the CD The Nylon Curtain. One of them is "Allentown," which got quite a bit of airplay if for no other reason than its political statement. The other, however, is a ballad probably known only by the true Billy Joel devotees, and I'd venture to guess that many of THEM couldn't sing the first two lines. It's called "Where's the Orchestra?" and is the last song on the CD. At the very end of the song, it has a reprise of the melody line from "Allentown." That one IS very subtle, and I smile with smug satisfaction every time I listen to it, because I'm pretty sure I'm the only one who has noticed it.

4 comments:

MamaNeena said...

Did you know Billy's wife wrote a cookbook? It is wonderful! She is absolutely adorable and half his age!!!!

Debateur said...

Well I happen to love Billy Joel too ! Although you're correct I haven't heard of the second song even though I have the album. I'll go look for it.

Julie said...

You visited my blog and noticed my Billy Joel quote, but how is it that you can relate when you say you're married to the world's last perfect man?

Bragger said...

Well, let's just say it took me a while (and a few toads, as my eldest sister would say) to find the world's last perfect man. Ha ha ha