MCMLXXXVIII

May I begin by saying that, in 2017, USA Today said that a Realtor.com study had about a third of respondents state that they would think about an opportunity to live in a spooky house.  Numerous film and writing have investigated the possibility, and I know a particular case of music investigating the hereafter.  That’s what this post is about, a song about living with a ghost.

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2017/10/25/how-many-people-believe-ghosts-dead-spirits/794215001/

By the way, from time to time, I work for a cemetery, called Maple Lawn Cemetery  http://www.maplelawncemetery.org/24701.html  I’ve been doing it since 2011, ten years.  We care for the grounds of the cemetery, handled inquiries, and maintain a Facebook page for the business.

Maple Lawn Cemetery

It’s not in isolation–on WordPress, author Jim Adams has come up with good blogging prompts, for October.  His style is daily blogging that’s in good fun and shows a good aptitude for writing and a healthy interest in music.

https://jimadamsauthordotcom.wordpress.com/2020/10/24/dress-up-day/#respond

For October 25, 2020, Jim’s prompts include the word, “ghost.”

I appreciate a decent brief and Jim had a kind comment for me when I last participated in his blog hop, two weeks ago.  I was glad to be welcomed aboard.

I’m discussing today, “There’s a Ghost in My House,” a Fall song, a hit for the underground Manchester band.  The Fall recorded a version of a 1967 northern soul song, which is a style of UK dance music.  The northern soul was a variation on the style of the day, in U.S. clubs.

Northern soul

With “There’s a Ghost in my House,” The Fall’s songwriter, Mark E. Smith, took the notoriety of The Fall’s noisy stage act far and wide.  The Fall received some critical acclaim, despite their strange sound, and despite a large number of personnel who were members of the band over the years.

The member who was a constant was singer Mark E. Smith.  “There’s a Ghost in My House” got a second life when The Fall did it for their album called Domesday Pay-Off.  The song “There’s a Ghost in My House” is a hit, their first hit, getting to no. 30.

I’m not sure Mark E. Smith took the northern soul scene all that seriously because he didn’t take rock music real serious, but he did work on the band a great deal, putting out a lot of records over the years, with many different directions evident.  Smith drew the name The Fall from an existential novel, by Albert Camus, nothing to do with autumn time, in case that’s a point of confusion.

I assume “There’s a Ghost in My House” was The Fall’s choice to more readily relate to American music.  The pop stylings of the song were the contribution of Smith’s spouse Brix Smith, whose pop flavour for The Fall endured the nineteen-eighties.

Brix Smith

“There’s a Ghost in My House” is not characteristic of The Fall’s music, nor did the band, with any line-up, want to play it much.  I bet that The Fall wanted radio and club play by DJs of the day.  The decision created a popularity for The Fall and took them in the direction of pop.

Their earlier record albums, however, showcased few pop elements.

Brian Holland, Lamont Dozier, and Eddie Holland, of the famed Motown Records label, wrote, “There’s a Ghost in My House,” together with R. Dean Taylor.  I am not sure if Motown Records responded favourably to The Fall’s interest in their history as a music label, but I suspect not, given that The Fall did not return to the material very often.  Motown Records had originated in Detroit and moved to NYC.

“There’s a Ghost in my House” is a great melody.  On the off chance that you are examining The Fall’s discography, it’s anything but an ill-conceived notion to begin there.

Without any commercial success, a music single, however ingenious, remains a failure.  However, it speaks to the artist’s intentions, and there are dozens of Fall albums, going back to the beginning of the nineteen-eighties.  Smith’s singing has the odd characteristic of extra syllables he added at the end of words he sang, no joke.

Mark E. Smith’s lyrics could be described as semi-nonsensical.  As an artist, Smith had a lot of power because he had so many ideas by which to explore a unique approach to rock music, and by an apparent willingness to change about.  By that I mean Mark E. Smith and his band always remained The Fall, but tackled different experiments, of noise-making, for their music.

I’ve read Camus, the writer whose novel The Fall inspired the name of Smith’s band, but I don’t know that Camus was an influence on Mark E. Smith’s music.  H. P. Lovecraft, according to Wikipedia, is one such influence, Lovecraft the sci-fi author who died in 1937, leaving a pantheon of stories behind about monster gods ruling Earth.  The difference between Camus and Lovecraft is night and day, Camus thinking very much about man’s solitude in this lifetime, Lovecraft exploring what came before and themes of despair in the face of utter monstrosity.

Despite the decline of The Fall in the late nineties, Smith found a resurgence for The Fall in the last decade of his life.  Smith died when he was sixty, in 2018.

Mark E. Smith

He had remained interested in experimenting with rock music and had a great career throughout his time in The Fall.  Some of his remarks about other rock musicians were harsh in tone, despite his contemporaries’ respect for his music.  A 2011 article in the New Yorker recalled that, despite Sonic Youth having played covers of Fall songs on BBC radio, Smith only returned the favor by declaring that the BBC should revoke Sonic Youth’s “rock license.”

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2011/11/14/plug-and-play

Thank you to Jim Adams for the blogging prompts.  Have a safe and happy Halloween!  I hope the trying circumstances of the year to date have not been overwhelming for you.

I blog for fun.  You’re welcome to like this post, to follow the blog, or to leave a comment.  I found Jim’s blog through good luck, by looking through WordPress.

My links

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/findingenvirons

Quora https://www.quora.com/profile/Patrick-Coholan

About Me https://about.me/patrickcoholan

There’s a Ghost in My House

There’s a ghost in my house

The ghost of your memory

The ghost of the love that was took from me

Our love used to be

Only shadows in the past I see

Times can’t seem to’ve erased

The vision of your smiling face

Dead flowers I sent thee

I can’t get over ye

There’s a ghost in my house

I can’t hide (ghost in my house)

For the ghost of your love is inside (ghost in my house)

Keeps on haunting me (ghost in my house)

Just keeps on becalling me (ghost in my house)

Down in my tea cup

I see your face looking up

Sitting in my easy chair

I feel your fingers running through my hair

Though we’re far apart

Your spectre’s in my heart

There’s a ghost in my house

I can’t hide (ghost in my house)

For the ghost of your love is inside (ghost in my house)

Keeps on haunting me (ghost in my house)

Still just a part of me (ghost in my house)

By the way I hang my head

You can see I’m afraid

Thought my heart knows you’re gone

My mind keeps rolling on

There’s a ghost in my house

I can’t hide

In my house I am helpless

practice superstitious

I hear footsteps on the stairs

I know there’s no-one there

Keeps on haunting me

Keeps on haunting me

There’s a ghost in my house

A ghost of your memory

A ghost of the love that was took from me

Ghost in my house…

Today Was a Good Day

July 16, 2015 was memorable because we were operating a back ho.  When I first learned that blogging could very easily be included in the operation of a small business, I was keen to get started and to have some fun doing it.   My introduction to WordPress I taught myself by learning with two WordPress poetry tutorials some tips on creating poems and while I didn’t intend to stop with poetry, I thought I would include some of the poems I wrote for the WordPress courses here.

These are photos I took that day of Peter, the senior manager of Maple Lawn Cemetery in St. Catharines, working on the cemetery grounds with a rented back ho, including digging a six-foot deep burial plot we required getting down for a funeral.

water

sept_sixteen_oh_fifteen_minus_six
The animals drink Thirst is quenched like airy breezes Who has provided?

journey

sept_sixteen_oh_fifteen_minus_five
To dismantle my pal was inclined Bold to bring down forever a bind Upon searching his soul Being sought by patrol Bliss of marriage and bounty his find

landscape

sept_sixteen_oh_fifteen_minus_two
my impressions tailored to the past updating from one to the next a lost dude where no one walks If there was once a man inside this, only was he there briefly. In other circumstances, someone else might have been thinking for him, but in this case, he believed he was responsible for his own thoughts. They were of his own devising this man was put here only for this single purpose, of making these thoughts. He was not to tread away Only when the setup files were completed, would he be set up and ready to run.

Poetry, Day Four — Imperfect, Limerick

sept_sixteen_oh_fifteen
How many hours a lifetime is dark?At a point of vantage I park-the only light a star Shining down from afar In my virtual journal I mark