Thursday, December 31, 2009
"Blue Moon" is a Rogers and Hart standard. Lorenz Hart wrote four different sets of lyrics to it for four different Hollywood films. The one that stuck, has been recorded by hundreds of artists, and the Elvis Presley version of 1954, is in my mind, one of the most beautiful and haunting records ever recorded. Sam Phillips summoned up some real magic that day in Memphis. Another beautiful and different song of the same name, was recorded by Big Star, in the same city twenty years later with another shaman producer--the late great Jim Dickinson--at the helm.
Bill Monroe's 1947 hit, "Blue Moon of Kentucky" is also a standard, in bluegrass, country, and rock 'n roll. Elvis recorded it in the same sessions that yielded "Blue Moon." In Monroe's version, it's a sad, and plaintive waltz to a lost love ("It was on a moonlight night/ The stars were shining bright/ and they whispered from on high/ Your love has said goodbye"). The stars are whispering to Monroe and he asks the moon to shine on the one that's gone and left him blue." Bill Monroe was a spiritual man, and made some of the spookiest records I know. In some folktales, a blue moon has a face and talks to those in it's light. Elvis, states the same, but asks a favor of the moon in a new set of lyrics for the introduction, "Keep on shining bright and bring me back my baby tonite."
What does all this mean? I haven't a clue. Consult an astrologer.
Happy New Year, and may the moon shine on you and yours, brightly, tonight.
(courtesy of boogiewoogieflu.blogspot.com)