Originally released in 1973 on RCA records
And the Hits...
The Newer Stuff
The Older Stuff
Around the Sun
Pretty Much Your Standard Ranch Stash
The point just may be that it doesn't
make any difference... This is my
sixth album since the whole Monkees
trip went down, and I think I'm beginning to finally
understand that it
doesn't make any difference at all.
It's because of the framework...
Once that superstructure is built, it's
very difficult to get past it and into
substance... the framework that it's
all relative to. Mine has been built on
logic, which is probably one of the
subtlest traps going... that whole
2+2 trip... the logical development
that leads to fear of anything outside
itself... "If it doesn't compute, man,
then it can't be good." How many
times have I told myself that? And if
there was never anything there to base
everything on, then it was instant dip-into-the-past time...
Pull out some
obscure, meaningless piece of a
foundation, and use it to prop things
up. Music was always the gum in those
works... All that thinking went to hell
when the music came. I'd be sitting
around, immersed in this bubble-bath
serenity of having figured something
out... put right into its nice little
orderly spot, and then - WHAMO -
I've got to deal with music... no
reason... no basis other than just its
purest expression. And it always came
right out of left field... tapping me on
the shoulder. There was a long period
of time when I used to respond very
positively... or at least it seemed
positive at the time... by being super-
responsible... really getting out and
putting everything together behind it.
Lots of study and quiet muse. Communion of some sorts. I
understand why, just about the time
I would get it together, all of a sudden
the whole thing would vanish... just
disappear... leaving me exactly
where it found me... peering out
from a column of numbers. Looking for
the 6 that followed the 5 that followed
the... Finally I bailed. Just packed
it in. No more fuss. Simple. That's
when it began to take on a whole
different complexion. It began to be
its own thing... have its own identity.
Instead of shadows dancing on the
wall, it became an old friend, always
greeted with a warm embrace and a
certain casualness that wasn't
usually a part of it. Me and the music
...we began to talk... Hey, man,
how you doin'...? You O.K.? What
you been up to... that kind of talk.
Pal talk. Trouble was, I wasn't sure
how much I liked this new guy that
walked in... I couldn't put my finger
on it... maybe that was the problem
... The music was just the music.
Not really earthshattering, mind-
blowing, brilliant... none of that.
Just music. This whole album was one
of those conversations me and the
music had. Don't get fooled by the
lyrics... Lyrics aren't really the communicative part...
Lyrics are just the
logical part for people who are into
that... Seem to always be there, the
lyrics... but they aren't really the
meat. The real stuff is what makes it
different from a fire bell, or an air-
conditioner hum, or sleep, or whatever
... bust down the framework, the
incarnation, and it is still music...
Urging one on to places only hinted at
... no ending, no beginning... so you
can really see past the car payment,
and the laundry, and the other paper
claims. I'm not that good about paying
attention yet. Fortunately, there is the
band. Six or seven people conversing
within a medium unlike any other...
Pushing at the walls all the time...
trying to break the barriers of harmony
and melody... examining that other
dimension beyond the senses that
peeks out from the cracks through
the plain musicalness of it all. We'd
be playing along... wandering in and
out, and someone would shout, "hey,
look over here, man; check out the
color; dig the texture." Taking only a
piece at a time... and finally realizing
that each piece was not part of a puzzle... but that each
piece was all
there was... Each one was whole...
and uniquely different from the other
... And based around the oneness
was the music. It really freaked me
out a little. I kept waiting for the song
which would correct our foreign
problems with Paraguay, cure cancer,
or make everybody dress and talk
like me. Instead I got love songs...
I love you, loved you, will love you,
was to have loved you, maybe won't
love you... Couple a nice country
tunes. I was sure this would be the
album that would catapult me right up
there with Dylan and Cole Porter...
or at least right in there with the ethnomusicologists
saying things about my
beautiful poetry, sensitivity...
intensely personal, blah, blah, blah.
Nope... just music... and an expression of the joy... pure
having encountered it. What fun...
what a total gas to have such an experience, and what peace
finally realized that it didn't make any
difference... Of course there was
always the why... I was always a good
one for that... Yeah, I can see it man;
I can observe the phenomena as well
as the next... but why...? I mean
there must be a reason. A reason.
What the hell is a reason... a goal,
an achieved end... that point in logic
that will accept at least the existence
of music. Very dangerous, this whole
point... good excuse for doing one
of those... Well, what the heck, if
there's no reason and it doesn't make
any difference, then just don't do it
... get a job, make something of yourself... as if yourself
weren't something... Why go through the thousands of dollars
and aggravation of
making a record to sell. I've thought
about that a lot... I'm sure there's an
answer, but it beats me. At least I'm
prepared to accept anything...
waxed fruit, tree surgery, whatever.
And if I come to a fork in the road,
I don't panic anymore, I just assume
that one is the road and the other is a
road off to the side.
Michael Nesmith, ©1973
After two or three months this album may lose potency
although some aroma may
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