What do they say, writing about music is like dancing about architecture?
You see music is all about emotion, all about feel, and the best you can do is convey that. Break it down to its components, its elements, and it loses its soul. You end up with facts and figures, but no heart. And this track has heart.
We’ve got to take music back from the gatekeepers. Whether it be Clear Channel or pricks like Tim Westergren. Clear Channel is beholden to advertisers and both are beholden to Wall Street. Music is secondary to the main mission, which is getting rich. Hell, Westergren is already richer on Pandora stock than most of the musicians whose Pandora payments he trots out. You see music is more valuable than Pandora, than any pipe. In the live performance arena, the musicians get all the money. Close to it. Sure, the promoter gets a few bucks, and the building, but without the star, there’s nothing. No one wants to go see an empty Staples Center. And without music, Pandora is worthless. Why should they pay less?
The power is in our hands. If we just realize this. Instead of looking to someone to sell out to, we should have some self respect. A great record can cut across demographic lines, make a ton of money, and it can break through instantly, just look at “Gangnam Style.”
Then again, that was mostly about the video.
And great songs go in the ears. Close your eyes and you get the same effect, if it isn’t BETTER!
And if I close my eyes and listen to “On It” I no longer care who wins the election tomorrow, the b.s. of life falls away, I’m one and I’m powerful.
I know William Topley. At least I did, twenty years ago. He fronted a band called the Blessing. They failed. He went independent. Most people have no clue who he is. But there’s something about his voice, the way he employs background singers.
This cut takes a while to reveal itself. It’s not made for Top Forty, just you. And the rapping is superfluous. But it’s all about the MOOD!
That intro synth. Like something off “Avalon.” It’s like you’re a balloon tethered to Earth…and then someone cuts the cord. You hover above the world, everybody else’s troubles, you just feel fine.
Then that ethereal background vocal comes in. It’s the equivalent of touch. An aural massage.
And then William Topley comes in with the chorus.
Maybe this is not your thing. That’s fine. Abuse me if you choose. But this is too good to let slide by, it needs to find its audience.
And I don’t expect coverage in the newspaper, I don’t expect an appearance on the “Today Show.” Music triumphed most when it was left of center, made just for me. When we owned it, when it let us go.
“On It” is subtle, but hypnotic. Like a late night drive home in the rain. When you’re isolated, yet feel fully alive, as your mind drifts.
That’s what music does. Set you free.
You can write about music. If you say how it makes you feel.
And this track makes me feel FUCKING GREAT!