this is mostly a classic dungen track, consisting of the many elements that make their sound immediately distinguishable; swedish lyrics (obviously) courtesy of brilliant songwriter/frontman gustav ejstes, unrestricted use of tempo and structure, lush instrumentation featuring a string section, mellow flute solos, grand piano, 60’s-style organ, etc., but then shifts gears in the middle and transitions into a momentous south asian jam. the title means ‘so it was settled,’ which makes me think of the aforementioned climax as a dispute in a basement in india eventually being resolved after much tension and conflict. for a project that only includes words in a language i can’t understand, dungen sure provides for a versatile and spectacular listening experience.
i had a dream last night about the futility of fighting in wars, of being one in a mass of dehumanized people led to slaughter, which somehow led to a saxophone player in beirut, lebanon, performing beautifully in an airport before being killed by some kind of air strikes. it was pretty upsetting at the time because his tune was so soulful and poignant. this track, and possibly my dream too, are appropriate because i’m going to check out this hookah bar downtown that featured an unbelievable (i’m not exaggerating) middle eastern ensemble last wednesday called atash, with members from iran, india, and guinea-bissau. maybe it’s all leading towards tonight.
i don’t even know if this is an official track, it just seems like two transcendent emcee’s flowing back and forth, probably from a decade or so ago. loose vibes to keep your day moving steadily along. this is the kind of hip-hop i wish would blare from radios as background music.
my style is original like fingerprints, i’ve been down ever since… make you reminisce like pete rock, when the beat drop
this is my life right now. wandering around the kitchen looking for food, but barely having any….so i put natural peanut butter, dark chocolate peanut spread, lebanese pistachio halvah, trail mix, and flax and hemp granola into a toasted pita. toki does it again; i’ve thoroughly enjoyed all of the recent material i’ve heard from her. and yes i noticed that it’s called ‘hungary stomach.’
Dubstep. Low BPM’s, high impact. Flailing with increased coordination as substances prevail. Leave after the lights have been on for ten minutes and the feel-good jams from the 90’s that white kids know the choruses to become tiresome. A muscular guy in a Chicago Bulls hat asks something about a cigarette, or a lighter, or the night. We begin talking…I’m wearing a Miami Heat hat, and hadn’t really talked to anyone all night. Interacted with, sure, but we all know the limitations of non-verbal communication. They’re kicking everyone out, and a pretty girl swiftly walked by, so I led us out.
He reminds me of my best friend. Forceful stature, visibly anxious, fully engaged in the moment. Rippling neck muscles that flex with tremors of excitement and momentary surges of disappointment. His name is Jerry; mine is Jared, and my best friend Adam jokingly took to calling me Jerry Baby over the years. He offered to smoke me out in his nearby car, and I could see that he was adamant with following through with the plans, that it meant more to him than to me, plus I (too) often get myself involved in things “for the story,” so I was wiling to oblige his gesture of friendship, despite some confusingly sketchy remarks he made about moving my bike closer to his car or accepting his offer of putting it in the back of his Toyota Corolla. To be honest I was just getting tired.
We smoked out of an apple. It was somehow my first time ever. He was sloppy, indecisive about whether to or where to pee, and packing bowls with the door open and the light on. When he went to pee in the Bank of America parking lot downtown, he ran there and back, as if to somehow evade attention by way of pure speed. We exchanged numbers and talked of eventually seeing an NBA playoff game on TV sometime. He’s from San Antonio but has been a Bulls fan since MJ’s reign in the 90’s.
I walked back to my bike, briefly chatting with a busking hippie with an alto sax that was playing soulfully in the now-probably-near three AM full-moonlight. His name was Athuai Rush and his business card described him as a “yogi musician farmer.” Jerry had inadvertantly kept him from maximizing his income earlier, by enthusiastically telling him that live saxophones are powerful, and voicing his momentary aspirations to prioritize jazz over hip-hop.
As I told Athuai that Jerry expressed regret afterwards about being a nuisance, and also that I had just met him tonight, a guy in a black Old Navy shirt started adding some opinions and agreements. He complimented me on my dubsteppy shirt, a cat in a space shooting laser beams from its eyes, and was ready to go once me and my unlocked bike were. He asked me to walk him to his car, to continue the conversation.
He asked me a lot about myself, taking interest in my passion for music an aspirations as a writer/musician. He described himself as a tour guide, employed at the Marriott (which entailed a gesture as if everyone knows where the downtown Marriott is), and an enthusiast for good weed. He was on a quest to buy some rolling papers, and said that he smokes Afghan Kush, which goes for “65 a gram, imported straight from Afghanistan.” I’ve heard plenty of people brag about having some purple haze before, and charging something like 20 a gram or 70-something an eighth, but this guy Clinton took those statements to the next level. I used to work with another slightly awkward middle-aged black guy named Clinton, also with questionable intentions, when I worked at the Melting Pot in Tallahassee. As we’re talking, a truck has pulled up next to us on the street, a generic-looking white guy on a cell phone, with glasses and a buzz cut. Clinton, sort of like Jerry but in a different sort of way, wants me to stick around. He was also glancing behind me at this truck, which I suspected might’ve been a cop. He rolled his window down. “Hey.” “How’s it going…you doing alright“‘s were exchanged. ”Just making some calls,” the driver said. “On my rounds.” This sounded very cop-like to me…Clinton apparently had weed on him, and I had my dugout/one-hitter on me too, so I wasn’t really liking the situation. “Escort service,” he said.
Clinton walked towards his window, away from me, as if some friends had showed up that he had been waiting for all along. “Do you have a card? Let me call your number from my phone so you have it. I give tours of the city.” He had previously urged me to take down his number, once I told him that I didn’t feel like smoking (anymore) that night. He was making a deal, and I was standing around holding my bike like a dork.
"I’m gonna get out of here Clinton. Later." I began to go and he briefly snapped out of is trance. "Alright now." He paused. "Call me," he optimistically suggested. He was probably feeling pretty good at that point, maybe finding an abundance of what he was searching for at three AM on a Sunday night in April. I biked home. I had a pretty good night, much better than staying in.
i wrote those six pages in my notebook after getting home last night. haven’t been doing much writing lately, especially non-tumblr-music-journalism posts. just felt like that was too ridiculous of an end of a night to not recap. i’ll consider it my triumphant return to creative non-fiction….or maybe just a mildly compelling story that you had to’ve been there for, a waste of everyone’s time involved. i do feel like these people would be fantastic to incorporate into something else someday. i don’t feel like it’s particularly strong writing of mine, but the story itself is the point and i hope i did it justice.
“A 70% cut to clean energy. A 25% cut in education. A 30% cut in transportation. Cuts in college Pell Grants that will grow to more than $1,000 per year. That’s what they’re proposing. These aren’t the kind of cuts you make when you’re trying to get rid of some waste or find extra savings in the budget. These aren’t the kind of cuts that Republicans and Democrats on the Fiscal Commission proposed. These are the kind of cuts that tell us we can’t afford the America we believe in.
And they paint a vision of our future that’s deeply pessimistic. It’s a vision that says if our roads crumble and our bridges collapse, we can’t afford to fix them. If there are bright young Americans who have the drive and the will but not the money to go to college, we can’t afford to send them. Go to China and you’ll see businesses opening research labs and solar facilities. South Korean children are outpacing our kids in math and science. Brazil is investing billions in new infrastructure and can run half their cars not on high-priced gasoline, but biofuels. And yet, we are presented with a vision that says the United States of America – the greatest nation on Earth – can’t afford any of this.
It’s a vision that says America can’t afford to keep the promise we’ve made to care for our seniors. It says that ten years from now, if you’re a 65 year old who’s eligible for Medicare, you should have to pay nearly $6,400 more than you would today. It says instead of guaranteed health care, you will get a voucher. And if that voucher isn’t worth enough to buy insurance, tough luck – you’re on your own. Put simply, it ends Medicare as we know it.
This is a vision that says up to 50 million Americans have to lose their health insurance in order for us to reduce the deficit. And who are those 50 million Americans? Many are someone’s grandparents who wouldn’t be able afford nursing home care without Medicaid. Many are poor children. Some are middle-class families who have children with autism or Down’s syndrome. Some are kids with disabilities so severe that they require 24-hour care. These are the Americans we’d be telling to fend for themselves.
Worst of all, this is a vision that says even though America can’t afford to invest in education or clean energy; even though we can’t afford to care for seniors and poor children, we can somehow afford more than $1 trillion in new tax breaks for the wealthy. Think about it. In the last decade, the average income of the bottom 90% of all working Americans actually declined. The top 1% saw their income rise by an average of more than a quarter of a million dollars each. And that’s who needs to pay less taxes? They want to give people like me a two hundred thousand dollar tax cut that’s paid for by asking thirty three seniors to each pay six thousand dollars more in health costs?
That’s not right, and it’s not going to happen as long as I’m President.”—
second that. i was very pleasantly surprised to see obama as the speaker of this quote. he may not follow through with half of the changes i want him to make, and surely part of that is because of the republican opposition, but i will certainly admit that he says the right things. the reality of the situation is indeed disappointing.