My Morning Jacket

Welcome to my new favorite band. I wish I’d saved the scrap of a page torn from a magazine, in order to thank whoever wrote the few lines that turned me on to these guys. The writer says, in effect, that My Morning Jacket’s album called Z is the best thing she or he has heard in a year. I forget the exact words, but something – the way it was phrased, or the overall context of the paragraph, or both – convinced me that heart, not hype, was speaking.

Z turns out to be one wonderful surprise after another. Can it get any better? Yes, it can, because there’s another track coming up. If I could only keep one song, which one would it be? Damn if I know.

“Into the Woods” has a slightly demented carnival ambiance with an eerie, theremin-ish thread that winds through it, like a very high soprano voice that never takes a breath. For a moment, it’s almost an annoyance, and then hearing it becomes as essential as food, clothing or shelter. Kind of like getting used to the banshee wail of Kate Bush, in her song about the doomed lovers of Wuthering Heights.

This single-note-at-a-time, wandering tone that’s not quite a melody, there’s probably a technical musicology name for it. The same kind of thing happens in an Ace Backwords composition, “Where Ya’ Going?” A single very beguiling strand weaves its way over, under, and around whatever’s happening with the other instrumentation and the voice.

Anyway … My Morning Jacket. Yeah.

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About Pat Hartman

Before publishing the two books "Call Someplace Paradise" and "Ghost Town: A Venice California Life", my main project was "Salon: A Journal of Aesthetics. " I wrote extensively for "Scene," a monthly arts and entertainment magazine with a circulation of 25,000. Also proofread, sold ads, put together the music calendar and, for a couple of years, served as editor. Presided over a couple issues of the local NORML newsletter, as well as being featured speaker at chapter meetings. Wrote a complete screenplay; collaborated on another one; worked on a couple of scripts (additional dialog and general brainstorming) with an indie film producer. Booked the talent for a large music festival. Wrote, designed, illustrated and produced various catalogs and brochures for small businesses. Spoke at a high school as a panelist on Women in the Professions; was a featured speaker at the 1991 Women in Libertarianism Conference; presented public programs on "Success in One Lesson" and "The Bloomsbury Group: What's It To Us?" Created the website VirtualVenice.info and wrote many politically-oriented pieces for Earthblog.net
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