Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Wistful Pop





It’s been a while since I've obsessed over a song; released in January 2006, this song is over seven years old and yet new to me.  From a little black-berrying by my husband regarding the singer Neil Hannon, of the Divine Comedy, to God Help the Girl, a story set to music project by Stuart Murdoch of Belle & Sebastian, a Scottish indie-pop group, Funny Little Frog is a little bit of musical magic.  

Okay, I'm a sucker for its particular mix of nostalgia, romance, innocence, and sweet sensuality.

First of all, it sounds like it's out of the early seventies with its string orchestration and simple, but sing-a-along-compelling arpeggio chorus. Then there are the words – clearly written for a man to sing, but the singer (in the video) works it well.  In fact, maybe that's why it works.

Honey, lovin' you is the greatest thing,
I get to be myself and I get to sing,
I get to play at being irresponsible,
I come home late and love your soul,
I never forget you in my prayers,
I never have a bad thing to report.

You're my picture on the wall.
You're my vision in the hall,
You're the one I'm talking to,
When I get in from my work,
You are my girl, and you don't even know it,
And you're the funny little frog in my throat.

My eyesight's fading, my hearing's dim,
I can't get insured for the state I'm in,
I'm a danger to myself I've been starting fights,
At the party at the club on a Saturday night,
But I don't get disapproving from my girl,
She gets all the highlights wrapped in pearls.

You're my picture on the wall.
You're my vision in the hall,
You're the one I'm talking to,
When I get in from my work,
You are my girl, and you don't even know it,
I am living out the life of a poet,
I am the jester in the ancient court,
And you're the funny little frog in my throat.

Had a conversation with you last night,
It was a little one-sided but that's alright,
I tell you in the kitchen about my day,
You sit on the bed in the dark changing places,
With the ghost that was there before you came,
You've come to save my life again.

I don't dare to touch your hand,
I don't dare to think of you,
In a physical way,
And I don't know how you smell,
You are the cover of a magazine,
You're my fashion tip, a living museum,
I'd pay to visit you on rainy Sundays,
And maybe tell you all about it, someday.

Past the Victorian mind-body dichotomy expressed, I think this song is a tiny condensation of the inspirational power and real hope offered to the lover in an unrequited love because the singer acknowledges it for what it is.

And because it's tough to be dark against that melody.

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