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Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Pop and the City: Part One

posted by on December 4 at 10:58 AM

And now for a song written by Glenn Frey:
4.jpg

The sun goes down, the night rolls in You can feel it starting all over again The moon comes up and the music calls You’re gettin’ tired of starin’ at the same four walls

You’re out of your room and down on the street
Movin’ through the crowd and the midnight heat
The traffic crawls, the sirens scream
You look at the faces, it’s just like a dream
Nobody knows where you’re goin’
Nobody cares where you’ve been

‘Cause you belong to the city
You belong to the night
Livin’ in a river of darkness
Beneath the neon lights

Why do I always hear this bad song? Why does it haunt my mind? The answer must be in this line: “’Cause you belong to the city/You belong to the night.” What’s remarkable here is part one: “[Y]ou belong to the city”; and part two: “You belong to the night.” Part one gives us the first layer of the song’s subject: He is a city person. This is where he lives, works, eats, and spends all of his free time. But the second part, “You belong to the night,” tells us something about subject’s soul. The second part deepens the subject. Why? Because the night is specific to the city. The night and its artificial light is the true spirit of the city. The country, like the city, has a day. The night, however, only happens in the city. The country sleeps; the city never sleeps.

Those who belong to the night are the most urban and also the most perverted characters. Why? Because nightlife constitutes a break from, a perversion of, the rhythms of nature. According to the laws of nature, the human must be conscious during day and unconscious during the night. This law dominates the countryside. The urban undoes this natural law and order and institutes a new one. And from this perverted order, comes the new subject: the person who belongs to the night.

RSS icon Comments

1

someone might remember this, but wasn't this song used a lot for a late-80's short-lived tv show about vampires living in the city? it was totally biting on 'lost boys', but did not have killer beach party scenes.

Posted by cosby | December 4, 2007 11:29 AM
2

the deepest thought ever thunk about glenn frey. fucking brilliant.

this song was written specifically as part of the "miami vice" TV soundtrack.

heres a clip:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yhlymmi2P5o&feature=related

great stuff. thanks for bringing this up, charles.

Posted by jz | December 4, 2007 11:51 AM
3

True. Although one could argue there is a different kind of night in the country. It all depends who you're running away from.

Posted by Beachhead | December 4, 2007 11:58 AM
4

Nice one, Charles.

Posted by Eric Grandy | December 4, 2007 12:42 PM

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