Saturday, June 10, 2006

accompanied music

Thanks to having seen "Mrs. Henderson Presents" the night before leaving for Paris, I have "All the Things You Are" lodged firmly in my head. I wept hearing it in the moving. It's such a moving song and is laden with meaning in the film, but that wasn't the trigger. The trigger for me was realizing how I had embued the song with meaning without even realizing it. Just hearing it made me nostalgic and bittersweet and full of warmth. It was one of those odd moments when you realize you know a song almost by heart without realizing how you know it. The tenderness you have for the song catches you entirely off guard.

Well, I have been having to listen to it on my ipod while in France. Ella Fitzgerald's rendition -- I knew it had to be her handiwork. Well, I was surprised that her version is much faster than I had remembered after hearing it through the film. All the same, I sing it in my head with the fast then the slow version.

Also, if you haven't seen "Mrs. Henderson Presents," do yourself a favor and rent it now. I was reluctant for these reasons: "Oh, look, Judi Dench playing a saucy older woman. How novel." But, really, don't be like me and question the depth of Dame Dench. For this reason, I must also watch "Ladies in Lavender" upon returning to NYC. What can't she do? How I would like to meet her.


Naomi has the soundtrack for "Brokeback Mountain" on her itunes which means I need to burn it before leaving the country. The instrumental song at the end (which was played about a zillion times during the Oscars and which made me cry helplessly at the film's close) is just something I need to hear over and over. My friend Katie loves it, too. I need to watch the movie again as Tim has not seen it and really should do so. The song meant one thing to me when I saw the movie, but now it also reminds me that Katie is a big sap just like me and that I'm lucky I work with someone who loves the New Yorker, laughs at my jokes, always says hi in the morning, asks questions like, "lauren, it isn't too warm for oatmeal for breakfast is it?" I am lucky to work with savvy, heartfelt ladies.

But the song is heavy. There's something so substantial about the song that I almost forgive Ang Lee for "The Ice Storm." I have to smile that Naomi has the soundtrack. We love the same soundtracks. Case in point: "The Sweet Hereafter."

But this song makes me ache. As much as I thought Jake Gyllenhaal really was the weak link in this film, there is something so beautiful in the urgency of Jack and Heath Ledger's Ennis just kills me. The final scene of this film is a piece of humanity that I know will only reveal more to viewers as they grow older knowing it. Oh, I can't help but cry thinking of it.


The last cd in Naomi's cd player was Emmylou Harris' "Wrecking Ball," which is an album I always associate with Naomi. The title song (written unmistakably by Neil Young) always makes me sad and happy at the same time. Sad for the sepia nature of the song, but happy because I always want to sing, "Meet me at the Brecon Prom..." (Bryn Mawr reference... sorry... I'm not as bad as I used to be when Gifford and I endlessly babbled about that sacred institution)

Emmylou Harris is another person I'd like to know. In some imaginary life, I would like to have dinner with her, Joan Baez, Joni Mitchell, Laura Nyro, Nanci Griffith. All women with serious issues with relationships. Is this a prerequisite to being a great folk singer? I would like to tease this out.


Lastly, I've been revisiting Jenny Lewis' solo album. This album got lost in the wake of my ALL NEKO CASE/ ALL THE TIME work schedule which required either Nicole or I playing "Fox Confessor..." throughout the day. But seriously, it's a great album. "Rise Up With Fists!!!" is a brilliant song. I love that Jenny Lewis was the girl in "The Wizard." I loved her in that silly, silly, silly movie that I knew even then was dreck. And I love that she has gone on to become an indie rock princess who can take that capital and go out and do a country album influenced by Laura Nyro (maybe Jenny can come to dinner, too; after all, doesn't sound like she's got a winning streak with relationships --- correct me if I am wrong).


I listened to Astrud Gilberto on the plane to try to lull myself to sleep as a child screamed the entire way across the Atlantic Ocean and a man snored in the aisle next to me. She is a genius, but I ended up watching "The Incredibles" while listening to her out of sheer inability to sleep. Sometimes music and movies don't makes sense except for strange moments. This was one of them.


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