Writings About Music
We "baby boomers" (awful term!) have failed to honor and protect our living earth, ultimately regarding the admonitions in songs like "After the Gold Rush" by Neil Young, and "When the Music's Over" by The Doors, merely as entertainment rather than accepting such artistic visions for the truth they embody. In the words of Jackson Browne, we "started out so young and strong only to surrender" and "true love could have been a contender."
The Pretender by Jackson Browne is one of the most powerful songs ever written, myself somehow never hearing it until about five years ago.
The raw, unfiltered nature of this recording still stuns, a timeless expression of naiveté and idealization. One interpretation of the concluding lyrics is that they prophesize humanity ultimately surviving via space travel to another planet. I suppose there's a lot of clean air, water and earth for us somewhere out there...
Ray Manzarek, a friend, and the organist here, attributed global warming to stupidity and ignorance more than evil.
- Michael Robinson, December 2018, Los Angeles
© 2018 Michael Robinson All rights reserved
Michael Robinson is a Los Angeles-based composer and writer (musicologist).