Toe Cutter/Thumb Buster
Thee Oh Sees
Toe Cutter - Thumb Buster
||THEE OH SEES
This is unofficially Laura Nyro week on tumblr — and elsewhere in the Mother/Goddess-run universe.
This occurs in, uhm, four year intervals for me. Suddenly, I wake up and I must hear nothing but Nyro songs for the next two weeks. It’s a divine disorientation and immersion, like mainlining a muse.
I then revisit her entire catalog and become re-amazed by re-hearing fragments and sounds I’d missed in previous visitations.
Nyro was pop music’s last great savant — she wrote her first song when she was 8 and then at 19, like Athena bursting out of Zeus’ forehead fully formed, released a torrent of meticulously crafted melodies and poetic reveries — compositions that melded soul, folk, show tunes, doo wop, and rock n roll, but weren’t contrived or precocious.
In reality she created an entirely new category of popular music. Many of her songs could rest easy within the great American songbooks. But too, there are free-form ramblings that are as strange and wonderful as something John Cage or Coltrane would compose.
The song Emmie is a great introduction to Nyro. It’s a complete cycle of emotions compressed into four different segments that arise and disappear within a seamless four minute arc. The melodies slip and slide — delicate but not effete; bold but not out of place with the fun tempo shifts. And this is just one ‘song.’
Nyro drove fellow musicians crazy because she rarely spoke and when she wanted a song to sound a certain way would say things like: “It needs to have more yellow come in under the dark red part.”
the first gay man i ever had sex with? he wanted to make sure i knew who Laura Nyro was. he played me one of her records before we had sex. Thank you C.G.!