Posts Tagged ‘Shilpa Ray’


“The most merciful thing in the world, I think, is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents. We live on a placid island of ignorance in the midst of black seas of infinity, and it was not meant that we should voyage far. The sciences, each straining in its own direction, have hitherto harmed us little; but some day the piecing together of dissociated knowledge will open up such terrifying vistas of reality, and of our frightful position therein, that we shall either go mad from the revelation or flee from the light into the peace and safety of a new dark age.”

H. P. Lovecraft, The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories


I have things that have to be attended to this morning so this will be short. I have watched the first three episodes of HBO’s Lovecraft Country and am still trying to decide whether I like it or not. I am not a horror aficionado nor a big reader of H.P. Lovecraft so I don’t look at it from that aspect. But it has been interesting enough to keep me coming back thus far. So we’ll see, I guess.

That brings me to the snip above from Lovecraft. It sort of reinforces my own belief that most things– civilizations, technologies, movements, etc– eventually evolve and grow until they reach an untenable point, Basically, that comes down to meaning that there is a beginning and an end to everything.

Nothing lasts forever.

Lately this thought fills me with dread and it may be that this feeling comes about because my fear of our desire as a people to enter into, as Lovecraft put it above: flee from the light into the peace and safety of a new dark age.

I was hoping to not be around when that happened again. Bad timing, I guess.

Anyway, this is just a prelude to sharing a song from Shilpa Ray, who I introduced here last week singing Pirate Jenny with Nick Cave. Here’s her song, Morning Terrors Nights of Dread. It caught my ear and the video has a cheesy appeal for me. I have caught myself humming the tune every so often this past week so I figured it must be worth sharing. Give a listen and have a good day. Got to run  now. Bye!


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In the dark times / Will there also be singing? / Yes, there will also be singing. / About the dark times.

–Bertolt Brecht


Didn’t really want to say much today. I did enough of that on Saturday, enough that I couldn’t imagine anyone would want to hear much more from more for a while. But I thought I would share the post below from over 10 years back about the song Pirate Jenny from The Threepenny Opera. I heard it early this morning and it reminded me of the story I told on Saturday about pretending to be a pirate in the woods alone. Maybe the draw in wanting to be a marauding pirate was much the same as it was for Jenny– a desire from a powerless person for control and power of some sort.

I don’t know.

But here’s the post and at the bottom are two versions of the song, one a classic theatric version from Anne Kerry Ford and then a version from Nick Cave in collaboration with punk vocalist Shilpa Ray. There are tons of great versions out there, as there always are for great songs, and I almost threw in Nina Simone’s  strong live interpretation of it. Hope you find one that works for you.


Bea Arthur as the original Lucy Brown

It’s one of those cases of one thing reminding you of something else.  I heard Bobby Darin’s swinging version of Mack the Knife yesterday and there’s a line that ends with and Lucy Brown.  One of those parts of a song that your mind is somehow attuned to and always hears whenever the song is played.

Anyway, it immediately reminded me of  seeing Bea Arthur, of Maude and Golden Girls fame, a number of years back in a one-woman show on Broadway of personal stories and song.   Going in, I knew only a little of her career outside the TV roles so I didn’t have high expectations.  I was pleasantly surprised by a great show.

I didn’t know much of her Broadway career and didn’t know she originated the role of Lucy Brown in the original Broadway version of The Threepenny Opera back in the ’50’s.  She told several great tales about the show and then did a stirring version of the The Pirate Jenny.

I’m embarassed to say that I didn’t know much at that time about The Threepenny Opera or Brecht or Kurt Weill.  Had never heard the song  Pirate Jenny and it’s story of a cleaning woman who daydreams of rising from her life of powerless drudgery to become a powerful and cruel pirate.  Great song with great imagery and Bea Arthur’s version was wonderful.  Angry.  You could feel her desire for retribution for every time she was wronged by those who simply overlooked her and  took her for granted.  It was a very powerful song and one that became and remains a personal favorite.

Anyway, here’s a very good version of The Pirate Jenny from singer Anne Kerry Ford:



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