Thursday, May 15, 2008

The Impression You Sell

Sarah and Steve Mason and I were celebrating Fun Boy Three's "Our Lips Are Sealed" last night and working our way over to the therapeutic-charismatic powers of Tears for Fears when it was remarked, "80's music...It's all there." I'm feeling the resonance of many a witness lately, and this one came to me on the Ipod today. Please join me in my exploration of this chronically, underestimated poetic-prophetic resource (I initially serendipitously misheard the opening line as "The deception we're TAUGHT":

The Fixx...One Thing Leads to Another

The deception with tact
Just what are you trying to say
You've got a blank face, which irritates
Communicate, pull out your party piece
You see dimensions in two
State your case with black or white
But when one little cross
Leads to shots, grit your teeth
You run for cover so discreet
Why don't they

Do what they say, say what you mean
Oh well, one thing leads to another
You told me something wrong
I know I listen too long
But then one thing leads to another

The impression that you sell
Passes in and out like a scent
But the long face that you see
Comes from living close to your fears
If this is up, then I'm up
But you're running out of sight
You've seen your name on the walls
And when one little bump
Leads to shock miss a beat
You run for cover and there's heat
Why don't they

Do what they say, say what they mean
One thing leads to another
You told me something wrong
I know I listen too long
But then one thing leads to another
Yeah, yeah, yeah

One thing leads to another

Then it's easy to believe
Somebody's been lying to me
But when the wrong word goes in the right ear
I know you've been lying to me
It's getting rough, off the cuff
I've got to say enough's enough
Bigger the harder he falls
But when the wrong antidote
Is like a bulge on the throat
You run for cover in the heat
Why don't they

Do what they say, say what they mean
One thing leads to another
You told me something wrong
I know I listen too long
But then one thing leads to another
Yeah, yeah

One thing leads to another...


Stephen @ Rebelling Against Indifference said...

David, I was at your talk at the Cohort meeting last month and loved the stuff you read from your new book. I'd love to grab coffee sometime.

jstephenlamb at

Jennifer H said...

Hi David. I hate to post this on your blog, but I'm a journalist working on a piece on faith and culture and would love to chat with you. If you could send me an e-mail at, I'd appreciate it!

jdaviddark said...

Thank you, Jennifer, for the excellent conversation. And Stephen, I'll be E-ing you right about now.
Anybody else have a word on the Fixx or a testimony concerning those radioactive days of lore? Anybody "saved by zero: as the saying goes/went?

Angela Hart said...

Totally!!! My favorite 80's power tune displaying the therapeutic charisma of the time is the Tears for Fears song "Woman in Chains." Remember that one? I would croon (usually to whomever my boyfriend was at the time) "So FREE her..."

Such a dramatic young lady I was.

ewan said...

i have to say that there is definitely some sort of tractor beam that draws you into the music of that era... there's an allure in the unselfconcioussnessicity of it all... i'm starting to believe that there may be a correlation to how high the bass guitar was worn... i imagine there was a certain vulnerabilty in having it strapped at chest height which was ultimatley liberating...

for me it's also the register that a lot of those songs are sung in... i can't hum or mumble them... i can only really sing those songs at full tilt in the privacy of the car or shower... i've been tempted to pull over to the side of the road during mr. mister's "take these broken wings" on more occasions than i care to mention...

tears for fears definitiely had it going on... "start of the breakdown" has been a long time favourite and "shout" still delivers goosebumps everytime without fail and it's been that way since i was about 9 or 10 years old... i had "mother's talk" on a constant loop in my head for several weeks after hearing it on this neon neon mix a couple of months back:

listening to the the whole mix tends to leave me feeling like i've eaten too much candy but it's well worth a listen...

hope all is good with you and yours dave!

Anonymous said...

I think the bass-at-chest-level was a 90's thing...

mister tumnus said...

how i love(d) them.

the truth is harder than the pain inside.

John Charles DeWitt said...

In my recent history I've felt a drought of Sunday afternoons hanging with you guys. Sitting on your blue porch steps, watching S & D & P playing with water-hoses, chomping on sandwiches, and talking about anything with you guys.
I think it'll be August before I see you again!
If you got the time, e-mail me an anecdote or two of your Nashvillian lives.
And I think Sam can rest assured that I am on earth. An honor to be remembered by him!

Joan said...

Unrelated, but, I don't know if you're an Erykah person or if you've heard her latest album but I read this and thought of your type of thing: