A Little Bit of Angst Goes A Long Way


Everybody knows songwriters are lovesick.

Hum a bit of “You’re No Good,” for instance, sung by Linda Ronstadt. Or Carly Simon’s “You’re So Vain.” Or Taylor Swift’s “Haunted.”

It’s not just the heart broken over cheating lovers.

There’s the unrequited crush, so touchingly rendered in these moody songs by Kris Delmhorst and Avril Lavigne.

I just wrote one a couple weeks ago called “Never.” It’s not copyrighted yet, but it takes some twists and turns as two people play around without committing, until the singer refers to their unwillingly hushed voices:

“Never letting our love show.

Take it with you when you go.”

Hard to absorb without the music, but it is striking how this theme has stayed with me through two CDs and a frustrating unrequited love I thought I was long since past.

Songwriters have an uncanny knack for self-absorption, though I do have a few songs in my repertoire that tell stories, examine the peacetime conflicts of war and actually exult about happy relationships.

What makes hurt so marketable? We’ve all been there, I guess. What theme do you come back to repeatedly? What is the language that lurks longest and deepest in the firing synapses of your brain, in your heart and gut, until it oozes out of you like sweat on a hot day? Is it part of your DNA? Or will you get over it?

5 thoughts on “A Little Bit of Angst Goes A Long Way

  1. I’m with you both, let’s get to that higher plane. And I dunno about the vision statement, I just noticed Bob responded to your post about having a vision by saying he was going to give us one. Maybe it’s embedded in our latest lectures? Bob?

  2. I don’t think every post has to have a thesis, but if you plan on exploring a thought, it would be beneficial to the reader if you lay it out in the beginning. That way, I can meditate along with you and we can ride the vibrations to a higher plane, right Sunny?

  3. Thank you for the compliment and the insight. I guess I’ve approached this post and maybe others as meditations where a couple of different ideas may emerge: marketing hurt, for instance, is an idea that could be explored on its own, in multiple new posts, potentially. This was one of those short posts on my beat that I just launched into. I am looking forward to Bob’s vision statement to get some clarity on whether every post has to have a single thesis.

  4. Since you started writing about music your posts are poetry. I feel like I’m taking a ride down a sheet of music.

    Unfortunately, when the song is over, I don’t know what the song was about. I feel you exploring your thoughts, but it also see the gears turning in your head.

    I feel like I’m going on a ride with you instead of you telling me about the ride you went on.

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