Saturday, January 9, 2010

Postcards from Picasso

PostcardsFromPicasso.ogg PostcardsFromPicasso.mp3 YouTube (piano - live demo)

William tells me the inspiration for this one was really simple. Parker Brothers used to publish a game called Masterpiece, where the players bought and sold pieces of art (some of which were forgeries). Among the game equipment, there were postcard-sized replicas of the artwork to be traded. Willy just picked out a number of the paintings he really liked and wrote the song around the names of the painters.

Since it reminded me of a Spring afternoon in Paris, it became a Musette piece (in 3/4 time to lighten the mood). I got stuck on the bridge (all of the verses had the same meter, and I really didn't want to pick one), but Rhod got me over that by suggesting a musical bridge. In the last verse I changed "sidewalks of night" to "city of lights" to strengthen the tie to Paris. Voila!

(Here's how I read things into what William writes... you already know everything there is to know about the origin and meaning of the lyrics, but when I read it I imagine an art student spending his days at the Louvre in the company of great art, and by extension, in the company of the artists themselves.)


Postcards from Picasso
wmh - 5 Apr 2006

I once saw the Louvre on a post card
Sent by Picasso himself
The Guggenheim ain’t got nothin’ on Paris
Excepting for Paris herself

Lautrec has been scene at the Moulin Rouge
Capturing the night life of France
While Degas attends the backstage ballet
Waiting in the wings for the dance

Surrealist scenes surround parasol dreams
From pastel to hard line extremes
Does life as they say imitate art
Or does art lie somewhere between?

I’d picture it all as Grant Wood would
Or Van Rijn when in his prime
Give a little whisper to Vincent van Gogh
And Salvador Dali real time

Angelo and El Greco put on a show
Renoir and Rubens the same
I missed Monet at the station today
As a greyed rainbow stood in my way

Surrealist scenes surround parasol dreams
From pastel to hard line extremes
Does life as they say imitate art
Or does art lie somewhere between?

[musical bridge]

And did I not mention da Vinci?
There are two reasons for that smile
Both have survived through the centuries
Still no one yet knows quite why

Surrealist scenes surround parasol dreams
From pastel to hard line extremes
Does life as they say imitate art
Or does art lie somewhere between?

I still get post cards from Picasso
Andy Warhol and the like
We all have breakfast at an outdoor café
Overlooking the City of Lights

[musical bridge to exit]

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