Sunday Music: Get Me Out Of Here (Nightime)

Hey! Sundays are for music. As a music-maker working in a less-than-musically focused world, this is my way to connect what I’m doing, thinking, and feeling with my favorite mode of expression This week I’ve been listening to…

Big Star doesn’t come up a lot in conversation, but when they do, I get all sorts of excited. As they were pitched to me,

“Think of Big Star like a missing link between the Beatles and REM.”

And, as they were also pitched to me (by the same friend),

“If you love the Replacements so much, how can you not love Westerberg’s god, Alex Chilton?! Wait, you don’t know Big Star?!?! Matt…”

I’ll start here and end with a song: Westerberg wrote a beautiful tribute to Big Star on Chilton’s passing. The opening paragraph goes like this:

HOW does one react to the death of one’s mentor? My mind instantly slammed down the inner trouble-door that guards against all thought, emotion, sadness. Survival mode. Rock guitar players are all dead men walking. It’s only a matter of time, I tell myself as I finger my calluses. Those who fail to click with the world and society at large find safe haven in music: to sing, write songs, create, perform. Each an active art in itself that offers no promise of success, let alone happiness.

Paul Westerberg, “Beyond The Box Tops”

Also in the article, Westerberg reveals his favorite Big Star song. It’s become one of mine too. It’s expertly constructed pop with a ghost haunting the chord changes. Why have a nighttime stroll + love song when you can leave an unanswered twist of pain in plain sight? That’s Alex Chilton for you. Here are the lyrics and a link to the song is below.

At nightime I go out and see the people
Air goes cool and hurrying on my way
And dressing so sweet, all the people to see
They’re looking at me, all the people to see.
And when I set my eyes on you
You look like a kitty
And when you’re in the moon
Oh you look so pretty
Caught a glance in your eyes
And fell through the skies
Glance in your eyes
And fell through the skies
I’m walking down the freezing street
Scarf goes out behind
You said, “Get them away”
Please don’t say a word
“Get me out of here
Get me out of here
I hate it here
Get me out of here”
At nightime I go out and see the people
Air goes cool and hurrying on my way
Glanced in your eyes and fell through the skies
Dance in your eyes and fell through the skies

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