musicology #398


Sound&Fury #2

(Terry Callier – Darker Than A Shadow)

Slowing down the tempo a piece with this the second cut on the sound&fury courtesy of a Cat who has been a constant feature on themusicologist’s playlists over the past few weeks..poetic lyricologist of the highest order, childhood friend of Curtis Mayfield and one time Cabrini Green resident, Terry Callier.

This majestic slice is borrowed from his 2002 set ‘Speak Your Peace’. Just like to add thas far as I am concerned Terry Callier is an artist who deserves our support. Buy his sets, go to his concerts and let him know that he has some ‘warriors’ by his side.

“Darker than a shadow,
Darker than a shadow,

I was asleep and having dreams,
Awakened by a silent scream,
A raging wind and clouds of steam,
It was..darker than a shadow,

Unprepared for scenes like these,
With heavy air and boiling seas,
Destruction of societies,
It was..darker than a shadow,

What type insanity is this,
Standing on a precipice,
That leads into a deep abyss,
And it is darker than a shadow,
Darker than a shadow,

There was a storm like this before,
Aftermath where angels walked,
Poisoned waters, wasted shores,
And it was..darker than a shadow,

Is this all we have learned my friends,
We’re doing now what they did then,
Repeating great mistakes again,
Darker than a shadow,

What type insanity is this,
We are walking in a scorching mist,
Leads down to a deep abyss,
And it is darker than a shadow,
Darker than a shadow,
Darker than a shadow,

And then from out the deepest void,
There came a flaming asteroid,
One third of this world was destroyed,
It was…darker than a shadow

Mankind was in a raging fit,
And thermo-neuclear fires were lit,
We never saw the end of it,
‘Cause it was…darker than a shadow,

What mad insanity is this,
Standing on a precipice,
That leads into a deep abyss,
It is darker than a shadow
What type insanity is this,
Standing on a precipice,
That leads into a deep abyss,
And it is darker than a shadow,
Darker than a shadow,
Darker than a shadow,
Darker than a shadow,
Darker than a shadow,
Darker than a shadow,
Darker than a shadow,
Darker than a shadow”

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5 thoughts on “musicology #398

  1. Young M/C, I am so pleased that you are digging Terry Callier and have passed it onto TonyBlue as well. I try and spread the word whenever I can, plus you have hit the nail , straight in the proverbial mush in saying he is worthy of all the support we can give.
    Without getting all evangelical on ya ass, to see him live, and you witness a performer with a lyrical relevance and a sincerity that sadly is quite a rare thing in music for the masses these days.

    Then the thing we all dig; his resonant voice, complimented by the quality of the players that he is surrounded with on his european tours.

    With this in mind, I try and catch him whenever I can…..travelling as far as Barcelona and then seeing him at home in Edinburgh, two nights later!!
    The Barcelona gig was very special, it was in La Plaça del Rei, a very small and historic open air courtyard in Barca’s Gothic quarter.
    Early support was provided by Earl Zinger,(ex Galliano front man) which was entertaining, with comical tales of the search for the heaviest bass line…..ever…….

    Considering myself well versed in his Cadet lp’s and his more contemporary releases. That night Terry dropped a bomb of a ballad that was new to me. A composition called ‘butterfly’ and it indeed did float out into the catalan night and captivate the audience and sucker punched, well, certainly me. I presumed it was a new release. Inquiring with the brasilian percussionist at the end of the Edinburgh concert two nights later, ..’no…its an old old song…..what? you were there?….that was a beautiful gig’

    So, this meant I had to take the bold step and buy an lp from….gasp…1978…to get the track. (Fire on Ice on Elektra) The studio track doesn’t cut it as good as my personal memories of the version in Barcelona which is perhaps unfair. J’espère, j’espère maybe with time, it will be included in a new set

    I’d say his latest lp will see more crossover and exposure…..but he has always been a dude…just look at the photo’s on the back of that trio of cadet lp’s

    signing off, this is sir errol on the mic saying…spread the word, preach what ya heard!!

    Like

    1. Don D..
      My first T.C (Or Top Cat as I shall here by refer to him), experience was in the 80’s on London’s early rare groove scene, (85-88), with his ‘CandyMan’ cut. Interestingly Rare Groove was only about dancing, the lyrics had almost no impact or significence. Possibly because we were young, foolish and happy but for themusicologist who had been raised on Curtis, Bill, Bobby and Marvin, (along with many other lyricologists), I needed more than just the groove. I enjoy the funk but for me it’s always been the fusion twixt word and sound that has the power. I’m a BIG fan of music from the back end of the 70’s be it Reggae, Soul&Boogie or ‘UKPressure’ as it was my informative period or to put it another way the soundtrack to my coming of age around the very important ‘9th year transition’ so the album of which you speak, (Fire and Ice), is one I have in the library.

      Elektra was an innovative label in them days and released some excellent, (non commercial), Soul/Boogie by musicologists such as Leon Ware, Pieces Of A Dream, LeRoy Hutson, Donald Byrd, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Debra Laws etc..I love this period in part for it’s sophistication but also for it’s lyrical content.

      Unfortunately I have to agree with you about the lack of content in today’s music for the masses but on the other hand hasn’t P(o)op always been that way?

      Next time you are planning a Top Cat concert hook me up and we’ll see if we can enjoy it together. the further from London the better !!

      Thanks for taking the time to engage in the dialogue…always a pleasure and most appreciated

      Like

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