Welcome to another weekly installment of “Free Tune Friday.” To hear past entries, click HERE.
Back in action this week with one of my favorite tunes. As I’ve mentioned more than once, I’m a huge fan of Guided by Voices, the indie band from Dayton, Ohio. For almost ten years, about 80% of the rock I listened to was by GBV or one the seemingly dozens of side projects spawned by frontman Robert Pollard and, in my opinion, the equally talented Tobin Sprout. It took an obsession with traditional Celtic music and bagpiping (smallpiping, to be precise) to break my GBV-inspired fever, but the damage was done–the band will always be a major musical touchstone for me.
Written back in the days of my fever, Slow Going is probably the closest thing I’ve recorded to a GBV tune. The key lies in the precision. The quintessential Pollard tune is less than two minutes long, is melodic, is often linear (no verse/chorus back and forth–just a single straight-on-’till-sunset sort of lyric), and ends with a bang. Or at least a nice little pop.
So, clocking in at one minute and fifty-one seconds, Slow Going hits all the keys. A little acoustic, a little phase effect, some rocking crunch in the finale, all paired with a set of semi-cryptic lyrics about the shallowness of an image-obsessed modern media, et voila!
Patch the holes, let it fly up to Hollywood.
Let the stars roll by like I said they would.
Take it out of town, try to find Information Man.
He’s got the balls that you rolled out of bounds.
Crush the cigarette and turn away
Before you catch another stray
Glance at the artificial burning bush
Glittering between the screens that glow
And open up another show
That tells the story of what you could be.
I’ve got a message the bend
So pretend you didn’t hear.
I’ve got some money to spend
If you’ll stop trying to go so slow.
To listen to this tune, click HERE. To download, right-click on the link and select “Save Link As.” For best results, apply headphones. Thanks for listening! Be sure to come back for next Friday’s installment…
(Written, performed, and recorded by David Stahler Jr. All rights reserved.)