Enough to Do All The Things You Think
by Dan
Please note: MP3s are only kept online for a short time, and if this entry is from more than a couple of weeks ago, the music probably won't be available to download any more.


Theo Wangemann - "Otto von Bismarck (October 7, 1889)"

The past didn't speak to Edmund, it barked at him. His great grandfather, Georg, was a lunatic, which isn't a nice word, but a nicer word would be an apology. Georg had three kids and then, according to his great grandmother's letters, "left forever in a flurry of violence." , in the late 1800's, he moved to New York City and lived on the streets, getting arrested for drinking and fighting and public blasphemy. Edmund's grandfather, Martin, had set himself on a journey to find his father when he was 19, and when he wrote home, the only mention of him was "a man who claimed to be Georg, joyless with a sunburnt face, but he looked so unfamiliar I thought him a liar." Martin himself went a little mad near the end of his life, writing a long, racist manifesto about how the government could fix all its problems. And Edmund's father Peter, now leaving a message on Edmund's voicemail, sounded doddering but still seemingly in control. "I just want to have email, that's all I really care about, a way to make email work, call me back." Edmund listened, hand cupped over one ear, in a bar and wondered if it were possible to inhale mental illness. Or to exhale it.

[more about a cylinder recording, the only known voice recording of a person born in the 18th Century, via the wonderful Gemma James]


Lykke Li - "Time Flies"

"A good song to find out you've got AIDS to." Howie. Howie was a jerk with a crooked smile. But, if there were some situation (imagine a tattoo of God pointing a gun to your head) where Edmund were forced to list his "best" friends, however unlikely or incomprehensible, Howie would have to hold the top position. He was Edmund's single buddy, he'd been single throughout all of Edmund's marriages, and the two reconnect most often right after one relationship or another falls apart. Tonight they were listening to music and smoking weed in Howie's basement. Howie had spent these last 15 years collecting, cataloguing, mythologizing his life. He had stories of debauchery ("Ed, what do you think FMFF stands for? When you see it written on a napkin?") and humiliation ("he came at me like that metal spider in Wild Wild West") and horror ("first my mouth, then my nose, then my eye!") and triumph ("a Coke never tasted so good, let me tell you") And although Howie was two tiny notches away from intolerable, Edmund often sat listening in admiration, because unlike Howie, he'd spent the last 15 years searching and finding, and cherishing and spit-shining and taking for granted and squandering and losing and trying desperately to forget.


Posted by Dan at February 3, 2012 7:40 PM

some how missed that Lykke Li track until now. great tune.

Posted by nju at February 4, 2012 12:31 PM

Really enjoying the Edmund stuff, Dan.

Posted by Ryan at February 5, 2012 2:57 PM

Thanks, Ryan!

Posted by dan at February 5, 2012 11:39 PM

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Sean Michaels is the founder of Said the Gramophone. He is a writer, critic and author of the theremin novel Us Conductors. Follow him on Twitter or reach him by email here. Click here to browse his posts.

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Dan Beirne wrote regularly for Said the Gramophone from August 2004 to December 2014. He is an actor and writer living in Toronto. Any claim he makes about his life on here is probably untrue. Click here to browse his posts. Email him here.

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