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Old 02-12-2020, 10:50 AM   #16
Andy T.
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Join Date: May 2005
Location: Douglas, WY
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Default Re: Analysis of Lightfoot career - long read.

Thanks Char, as always, for digging up and posting such things to this Forum...

Originally Posted by spocksbrain View Post
I found the piece to be quite long-winded and pompous. If you want someone to be able to read and appreciate a piece, especially an opinion piece, keep it simple. Don’t stuff ten pounds of sh*t into a five lb. sack. .
I'm not sure if I'd go as far as to say that, but...

I had a number of thoughts as I read through his essay. My own writing has been influenced by the course in Technical Writing I had to take in college. That mostly taught focus, and presentation... but not about this sort of thing. So I'm not sure if I'm really qualified to judge "critical analysis" - which this is trying to be - but I'm not sure if the author was able (or could be able) to distance himself from personal baggage. However, all criticism means you have to have knowledge... and that means having personal experience - or "baggage" - in order to form opinions. I think he "tried" to bridge the gap between them, and tried to play fair, sort of.

Now, I thought he spent way too much time talking about "tuning" though. I found it kind of hard to read, he needed to cut that down. Then he didn't come up with the tag-line I was expecting... "Gord knows his vocal performance has declined, so he's decided to make it up for it by making sure every other note delivered on stage is absolutely perfect"... and instead, hints that boring songs are made better by it. Not what I expected and in some ways... worse.

Why? Well, on this Forum, we are all Lightfoot fans. Most of us know his songs inside out, from a gazillion repeat listenings over the years. I've found that every single GL album benefits from repeat listenings, getting to know the songs, the words, and the arrangements. Now this guy, someone who admittedly listened to the earlier GL records in such a manner, but I really don't think he gave the 1980-onward records more than a passing glance, I don't really think he has the right basis for criticism on them. On tuning he says: "In all, I think there are reasons to prefer the slightly wobbly music of the younger Gordon Lightfoot to his rigorously tuned and boring records of more recent vintage. ".

Okay, "pitch perfect but boring" is the conclusion. Ugh... whatev.

Oh, agree on the comment about Version 2 of The Way I Feel. That was the first version I ever heard, hell that was on a scratchy mono LP even, but I really liked it. I was actually a bit let down when I later found the first arrangement of it. I never considered v2 to be "psychedlic" at all.
"May this world find a resting place... where Peaceful Waters flow..."

Last edited by Andy T.; 02-12-2020 at 11:57 AM.
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