MCMXC

This blog gets me crossing paths with individuals who have something to add about the world as they understand it.  Like the Discover feature on TikTok, imagination is an alluring quality.  

Jim Adams is a writer with a fascination for music, who concocts prompts for a blog.  He thinks of words for participants to find in song titles, or lyrics, in a blog format.

Participants discuss the songs with a common element, the writing prompt, as it appears in the lyrics, or in the song title.  I am very late to the challenge this week, but I have seen Jim’s observe about his prompts, “better late than never.”

Photo by Matt Jones from StockSnap

Today’s a Thursday–another favourite blog of mine, Beauty Beyond Bones, goes live Thursday evenings.  In fact I am posting opposite hers tonight.

Although, this fall, her focus has often been on the election, BBB being an American, I can still with a clear conscience recommend her blog.  She is a kind Catholic girl who writes about the inspiration Jesus has for her when her eating disorder challenges her.  She has been in recovery something like thirteen years now.

https://beautybeyondbones.com/

I am new to Jim’s challenge.  I have read some of his participants’ blog discussions and I have followed along some of what is new with Jim–he has organized the challenge right through to 2021.  He publishes the prompts carefully, only a few at a time, to let his followers know what is coming.

For November 8, Jim prompted “days of the week,” and the song I thought of is Monday Morning, by the band The Church.  It has taken me a good deal longer than I anticipated to get this post ready and finished, but I thought the finished post might be good enough that I should go ahead and post it, whether or not I’m so late for Sunday’s challenge.

The Church is a rock band with a dark flavour for their music, rarely undemanding, weird at times, and atmospheric.  It’s not from my part of the world, but I like it.

The Church

The Church in the year 1990 wrote Monday Morning, singer Steve Kilbey, drummer Richard Ploog, guitarist Marty Wilson-Piper, and, guitarist Peter Koppes, for the record Gold Afternoon Fix.  The name of the album is an expression from the stock market, made here into an album title with a bit of a sense of humour.

At the time, The Church excused the completed collection as an innovative disappointment.   The percussion on the melodies didn’t turn out.

One of the songs for Gold Afternoon Fix is entitled Disappointment.  “Late for an appointment, clothes everywhere/I cannot find my memory anywhere/Ah disappointment just doesn’t care,” Kilbey sings.

I think Monday Morning is a song that initially appeared only on the CD release of the album, not the LP.  For me, The Church is a charming band, and I believe founding songwriter Steve Kilbey has since allowed that his original opinion about the album needn’t have been so critical.

The Church began in 1980 as a new wave band, a music genre emerging after the punk rock scene.  The Church was pretty noisy, good, though.  By 1983 they were making more experimental music.

By creative failure, I only mean music that lacks integrity, bad music.  That’s not The Church.  They are a band I quite like.

The chief problem with Gold Afternoon Fix is really that the personnel couldn’t come to an agreement about the percussion.  The melodies are very acceptable at any rate.  For example, I like the tune Monday Morning.

Perhaps the song is about a weekend fling, the freedom of time spent away, as from office life, when a free heart gets heavy again, when Monday morning arrives, and the weekend has dispersed.

The Church was in L.A. and the culture of the day must have touched on the lyrics Kilbey wrote for the record.  The air was full of energy.  “Oh Monday morning, the cracks become quite clear,” Kilbey sings.

As far as the discography by The Church, Gold Afternoon Fix followed their record Starfish, their 1988 album, which was a major achievement for them, and which contains the exemplary melody Under the Milky Way.  The record Priest = Aura followed two years after the fact, in 1992, which Kilbey further views as the band’s show-stopper.  Steve Kilbey recalls fondly the 1990s in Sydney, Australia, he’s said on Twitter–I imagine that is the place where he withdrew.

Starfish

Gold Afternoon Fix is an album I like, and albums by The Church are often pretty good.  The band did have trouble getting the percussion for Gold Afternoon Fix correct, and drummer Richard Ploog only plays drums on four of the songs on the album.  The other songs have the beat of a drum machine.

Other than Steve Kilbey writing occasional new material with a drum machine, the band had never considered using that kind of percussion on an album.  They’d become known for being a great beat.  Richard Ploog, the drummer, couldn’t finish recording the drums for Gold Afternoon Fix, however.

Mr. Ploog’s interest in music had stopped meeting the vision the other members of the band had, for the songs.  Ploog’s energy was turning into contention, with the interest in music the other three artists had.

Ironically, one of the first songs The Church did is called Too Fast for You.  “Oh, and I hope I’m not going too fast for you/And don’t believe it when they say it’s over,” Kilbey sings.

Wikipedia says drummer Nick Ward played on their first collection; through the 1980s the band’s steady drummer, for a very long time, 1982-1990, was Richard, who left the band after Gold Afternoon Fix.  It doesn’t look to me like Wikipedia is altogether exact; I can see focuses that I don’t accept are right.  Mr. Ploog withdrew from The Church around 1990, to invest more energy with his better half.

In Marty Wilson-Piper’s blog, an entry Wilson-Piper wrote in October 2011, Wilson-Piper explains that Monday Morning is one of the four songs that Mr. Ploog is playing on.  Marty Wilson-Piper is one of the founding members of the band, along with Kilbey and Koppes.  He calls attention to Peter Koppes’ mandolin, on the melody, and that is somewhat enough to appreciate the tune.

Mandolin

Monday Morning is one of the last songs Mr. Ploog played on while The Church was a big commercial act.  They’ve remained to make records for years, but after 1990 they weren’t the same band, however good Priest = Aura turned out to be (a good album, too).

Artificial Photography

In my first year of school, 1996, I read a gathering about The Church.  There were some jokes about The Church’s concert film for Gold Afternoon Fix turning up in retail discount bins.  It was a joke about Gold Afternoon Fix not being their best album.

All things considered, fans’ excitement for The Church was unmistakable, and Richard Ploog got a ton of regard from audience members.  Gold Afternoon Fix also sold very well, commercially successful.  Ironically, the commercial rock was hard to combine with artistic integrity, Mr. Wilson-Piper’s comments reflect in his blog.

The difference between Gold Afternoon Fix and some of the earlier collections of music by The Church, like Remote Luxury and Persia, in 1984 and 1985, that the band’s vision for their music came across loud and clear on releases like the aforementioned, and was much more subdued, so to speak, by 1990.  To tell the truth, I don’t know that the meaning of a song like Shadow Cabinet is at all clear to me; however, Shadow Cabinet was the name of their fan webpage.  Though years ago, I am sure it would have seemed to be quite a simple page compared to how it might have been today; pictures and blocks of text, I recall.

I sat in one of the rooms of the home of one of my uncles looking for The Church on AOL.  The Church was one of my very first Internet searches ever, and certainly the first band that I researched on the Internet.

The meaning of the lyrics for Monday Morning are clearer for me than words like “Queueing in the ruins in the wake of the gale it’s/Harmony I say” in Shadow Cabinet.  I like the soul of what Steve Kilbey is singing there.

These days Steve Kilbey is a very small YouTuber, and both Koppes and Wilson-Piper have moved on from The Church.  Koppes continues to write and record music, as does Kilbey; both had new albums in September of this year.  I’m not completely sure what Wilson-Piper has been doing.

Fans of The Church are sometimes referred to as their Army.

Thank you to Jim for his prompt, “days of the week.”  You should take a look at Jim’s blog.

https://jimadamsauthordotcom.wordpress.com/2020/11/07/a-week-is-a-unit-of-time/

As well, you’re welcome to like, follow and/or comment here.

https://www.facebook.com/findingenvirons

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

https://about.me/patrickcoholan

Monday Morning

Beyond the city, and evening dust

Dreams and thunder rattle the rust

You had an idea that you won’t have again

She’s forgotten your name and hopes you’ll do the same

Start of the ash, and the end of the flames

Burning you turning you

There was a lifetime spent in the sun

Hundreds of chances, blew every one

Dice rolled, double six, double six, double six

Owner of trouble, flesh blood and bricks

You had an idea that you won’t have again

She’s forgotten your name and hopes you’ll do the same

The start of the ash and the end of the flames

Turning you burning you

Oh Monday morning, the cracks become quite clear

Oh Monday morning, take me back, leave me hare

Beyond the city, and evening dust

Dreams and thunder rattle the rust

You had an idea that you won’t have again

She’s forgotten your name and hopes you’ll do the same

Start of the ash, and the end of the flames

Burning you turning you around

//genius.com/songs/1178162/embed.js

Monday Morning

FOWC–Collaborate

I follow a blog called Fandango, which keeps the custom of single-word prompts bursting at the seams, with the single word prompts WordPress once presented, having reached a conclusion around the time I began composing these.  Tonight I looked in thinking I might benefit from such a suggestion, and I saw that Fandango’s word tonight is the word “collaborate.”

    The word means work jointly, or, alternatively, cooperate traitorously.

    I was taught both connotations to cooperate when I was in college.  In the sense of collaboration with a distinguished painter, I learned that in Film 101, and in the sense of collaboration with the colonizers, I studied that in business law.

    Film 101 identified for me a few ideas which had interested me since I was a child, like why did names of people run up the screen at the end of a movie.

    That film professor was a young, tall, handsome man, who explained that those end credits identified that the film was the collaboration of those people’s work.  He told us in the school auditorium that the film wouldn’t have been finished without the help of all of those people.  I’d once inaccurately assumed that the most renowned people with their names on a film were the ones who chiefly ran the show.

    Until college, I don’t think I’d considered that all of those people were important, not just the ones with star power.  It was an advantageous exercise.

Photographer:
One Idea LLC

    It is too bad that schools everywhere have closed their doors at present.  Although I personally was only an average student, I think of the problems in the future created simply by making school unavailable at the present time.  I have heard of school debunked, of course–Gary Vee, for one, I’ve heard on video overlooking school in favour of an entrepreneur getting started making a living.  I’ve heard him say on camera, as he says so many things, that if a young person’s parents do pay for that individual to go to post-secondary, that person had certainly better make the most of it if it is at the expense of the parents.

    In fact, I wouldn’t mind hearing what Gary is saying about the present catastrophe.  I have seen GaryVee video titles on YouTube recommending that business enterprise on the Internet is as yet a practical road for what’s to come.  Good luck to the young people of today, then–they need it.

    My college business law class took some of the wind out of my sails at the time.  There were a lot of definitions run past us that seemed important yet awfully complicated for beginning young people.

    In a day in the classroom, the gentleman who taught us gave us a TV recommendation, of all things.  “Watch Law & Order,” he said to us.  For a long time I did, not having had such a title dropped on me in a setting like that previous to the day he did.

Photographer:
Leeroy

    He was joking about the difficulty he was imposing on us.  Thanks for that, I think now.  Although for a while I was a fan of the show, you know you don’t get the time back.

    There was just so much of it–when did I ever find time to work?

    The synonyms for collaborating, both join forces and fraternize, were thus equally handled by the well-meaning but slightly eccentric business law teacher.  Some business education is important.

    I appreciate Fandango’s prompt tonight.  Good luck with staying safe.

You’re welcome to follow or to comment.  Remember to respect the space of everybody in it.  A lot is counting on it!

https://fivedotoh.com/2020/03/20/fowc-with-fandango-collaborate/ #FOWC

Boldness of The Skywalker Saga: Where’d You Go?

Dedicated to a love of Star Wars, Celebration this month in Chicago flabbergasted fans.  The assembly included panel discussions and all manner of Star Wars exhibits, and also celebrity appearances, a teaser for Episode IX, along with trailers for EA’s game Jedi:  Fallen Order, The Clone Wars S7, and The Mandalorian.  The celebration also took a look back at The Phantom Menace, embracing the sci-fi franchise once again.


StarWars.com

I took in some of it owing to its availability on YouTube.  Celebration, I recall, is nine years in the running, and in 2019 it highlights Episode IX.  Celebration revealed the title of Episode IX, and a teaser trailer.  There is excitement in the business sector of the entertainment industry, being the introduction of Disney+.  Disney+ is making available animated features from Disney’s history of films, along with Marvel Cinema Universe titles from the last ten or eleven years, and the Star Wars films, of which by now there are several.

The reason I enjoy Star Wars is that when J. J. Abrams directed The Force Awakens, I felt the excitement that Star Wars was again back speaking to me.  It seemed to again be a film series to be passionate about.

The response following Celebration did not completely line up with the positive outlook of the fortunate people who went to Celebration in person.  While most everybody there loved what’s going on, some of the YouTube channels who discuss Star Wars have mixed feelings, to say the least.  Geeks + Gamers criticized the teaser for Episode IX, The Quartering was dismissive, and a union of voices on the Internet ridiculed reactions that were exuberantly emotional.  All that is best measured against the outpouring of support for the franchise.

It is almost as if there is a guilty conscience about being part of the Fandom Menace and hating The Last Jedi, but still wanting to see what Episode IX is about.  I am sure the average fan does not feel this way.  I waited for The Last Jedi to go to Netflix, but I enjoyed it.


Photographer:
Tim Mossholder

The influence of Star Wars is hard to comprehend, but there is a war indeed between the feelings a fan has for Star Wars in the nineteen seventies and eighties, and equivalent satisfaction with the new trilogy, however much it taps into your experience of Star Wars and however deep it runs within you that the original films were perfect.

Rian Johnson directed The Last Jedi, and while that film was a commercial success, the popular response to the movie, as, for example, those voices on the Internet made known on Rotten Tomatoes, divided the fans.

None of this will be settled until December, but there will be a lot of excitement that grows this summer and fall.  As is typical of hot takes, animosities, apprehension, and outrage for Star Wars will be evident in the backlash that is going, “to battle,” for whatever reasons.

Publishous this month presented the Where’d You Go writing prompt.  Publishous is an 11,000-strong Medium newsletter which presents and highlights Christian writers who seek to make it, in the sense that they are writing because of the compulsion they feel to do so.  Although I’m not a member of Publishous, I look over articles they present, which provide some inspiration to blog in light of their writing prompts.

I am also a volunteer at a cemetery, Maple Lawn Cemetery, and I am their SMM.  You can find out more about us here: http://www.maplelawncemetery.org

Thank you, and please feel welcome to “like,” “follow,” and/or comment.  All the best.