Saturday, December 3, 2011

Who doesn't need love and medieval babes, really?

I have been listening to a lot of NPR at work, figuring it will make me an all-around classier person, but instead, because I'm me, here are without a doubt the two most fantastic things I have gotten out of it over the past month or so:

1. The Mediaeval Baebes, a.k.a. All Of My Nerdy Medieval Dreams Come True, Music Style

The lyrics of this song come from a 15th century Welsh poem in celebration of female genitalia, and to quote the CD booklet, "Due to the fact that this poem is a celebration of the female genitalia it has been banned from many anthologies of Welsh verse on the grounds that it is salacious." Because I am one of those dorks who is all about the study of literary ladies (both the writers and the written-about) throughout history, and female empowerment, and not slut-shaming female sexuality, I just find the existence of this awesome. Have you ever heard a lovelier song about lady parts? Actually, since I am posing this question to the whole wide internet, maybe I should just keep it rhetorical. Don't answer that, internet! Just listen to the pretty song, and if you're curious re: specifics, go look at the youtube page, and the comments section has a transcript of the poem.

Anyway: this group makes my life. Tam Lin! Scarborough Fair! The Circle of the Lustful! Dringo Bell, which is another one that gets pretty darn bawdy if you check that lyrics booklet! Really, their music is seriously the best thing to happen to my secretly Celtic fae heart since Loreena McKennitt. (Which, speaking of, you go listen to The Mystic's Dream and just try not to freak out at the awesome. You just try!) One of these days, I will get a red velvet cloak and go running through the forest in artful slow motion. It's just going to happen.


Ready yourselves, all.

2. This Sensitive Folky Irish Cover Of L.L. Cool J's I Need Love, A Song Which I Had Never Heard Before But Was Utterly Won By In The 5+ Minutes Some Genius Made The Spectacular Life Decision To Play It On NPR And Change My Life.

To those of you who do not know this: my favorite song of all time is Wuthering Heights by Kate Bush. There is something about extremely earnest, extremely weird, extremely dorky music from years past that just makes my heart soar and dance with delight. I just cannot handle all the greatness happening in my ears and brain. (Especially if it is a) rap- or b) Bronte-inspired, I guess! And if it involves dancing around a forest in red, doing moves that were clearly somewhat inspired by an atypically coordinated mummy? I am yours for LIFE!)

So this ... this is just very special to me. I heard it entirely out of context on that fateful day at work, and just spent that glorious five minutes picking out weird phrases and wondering ... what was this? Was it a joke? Was it serious? Why was he rapping -- but so sensitively, so Irishly? Why does he have to get so explicit about their ~romantic encounter~ a few minutes in? (This is still a question I have. My God so awkward! Of course, that just makes it even more delightful. I guess this is also a little hypocritical of me after praising ye olde Mediaeval Baebes up there.) So many questions, and beyond those questions, a certainty that this song was going to change my life.

THIS is what I unearthed on youtube:

First off are the magic words 'recorded from the album ACOUSTIC MOTORBIKE (1992)', so you know you're just not going to go wrong here. This one is not identical to the recording that so enraptured me, which has some vaguely Mummer's Dance-esque Irish drum beats (sidenote: oh my gosh, if we're gonna talk best songs ever, there has to be a Mummer's Dance reference, 'cause DAMN YES) going in the background, not to mention some SENSITIVE STRINGS that kind of play you out of the whole song. So clearly that version is the very best option. And maybe I bought the mp3 on Amazon last night. Do I have any regrets? What's a word that means 'no', but times about fifty with seventy-five exclamation points after it? I burned it to a CD. I am going to listen to that CD until I can rap this song like Luka Bloom raps this song. Maybe a little less Irish. Maybe a little more Irish. You never know with me.

So my current life project is committing that to memory. And also to watch all the live performances of this gem on youtube.

When I say things about my post-college existence not being fulfilling, obviously I do not mean all the time.

Let's play this entry out with a series of text messages that just occurred between my dear darling friend and kindred spirit Dana and myself. Sometimes I mentally compare us to Anne and Diana of Anne of Green Gables, most perfect book of my life, because 'Anne' and 'Hannah' share some letters, and you can't spell 'Diana' without 'Dana'! There's some Avonlea magic at work there, I just know it.

Anyway. Texty-texts:

Me: Oh definitely. There's some very Mummer's Dance style percussion and strings. Cloaks are way relevant.
Dana: I am youtubing this RIGHT NOW.

So ask yourselves, dear readers: what would Dana do?