Saturday, March 03, 2007

song of the week: let the river run

I am almost certain that I have the heady combination of Melanie Griffith and Carly Simon to thank/blame for giving me the bravery/stupidity to hand in my notice at work this week.

When I was a little girl, I figured work would be full of glittering skyscrapers, ruthless backstabbers, grey power-suits and white Reebok high-tops. Somehow I'd assumed that I would breeze through all that crap, emerging sparkling and filthy rich, infamous and celebrated for my head for business and a bod for sin, just like Tess McGill in Working Girl. Instead I'm still in the same dreary suburban office block, in my scuffed Miss Selfridge heels, surrounded by the same old ruthless backstabbers.

When a good friend of mine left our rather culty little office, I made her a special compliation tape of absolutely appallingly classic music, with a picture of Melanie Griffith on the front and the title, 'What would Tess McGill do?'. Tess was our icon - and if you follow her sexy, subtle but professional lead, you're sure to end up with your own corner office, Carly Simon wailing behind you in your own perfect happy ending.

Let The River Run, the theme tune to Working Girl has got everything;

a) choral introduction picking up the climax to the chorus
b) single piano and female vocalist delivering a down tempo, prayer-like introduction, probably beneath a spotlight on the live video
c) electro-drum beat building in emotional manipulation (a'la Elton John's Circle of Life - the prime example of such heart-tugging treachery, and oh, another Oscar-Winner, a sure sign of dubious quality)
d) overdone quasi-religious lyrics, gradually building in scale (Let the river run, Let all the dreamers,Wake the nation, Come, the New Jerusalem
e) explosive female scream, cues the gospel choir (We the great and small, Stand on a star, And blaze a trail of desire,Through the dark'ning dawn - *shudder*)
e) squealing '80's guitar solo
f) female harmonies against increasingly evangelical choir and "soulful" guitar peals against apparently endlessly repeating chorus, delivered alternately with staccato intensity or diva-like wails; 'We're coming to the edge, Running on the water, Coming through the fog, Your sons and daughters.'

I know it's terrible, but I LOVE this song - and so does my Mum, so blame her for encourging my whole Carly Simon obsession, turning to Working Girl for comfort on a hungover Sunday afternoon.

By Sunday night, I felt so sick and sad at the prospect of going into work, that I found myself asking that fundamental question; 'What would Tess McGill do?' and after yet another blue Monday, handed in my notice. Walking home that Tuesday night, I imagined a camera picking me out at Vauxhall underground station, triumphant amongst all the suits, passing a vast billboard with the words 'Freedom to Choose' behind me (yes, it's really there) as Carly Simon belted out her ridiculously overblown anthem for the American Dream.

Unfortunately, I am not American and I am not Melanie Griffith. I am now simply unemployed. Now, again I ask you, 'What would Tess McGill do?'

2 Comments:

At 03 March, 2007 14:27 , Blogger minifig said...

Much as I appove of the sentiment, and I'm glad you're getting out of your evil workplace, this is an abysmal song, oscar or no...

 
At 20 March, 2007 11:38 , Blogger Rebecca said...

monkey one
i just wanted to leave a comment. not necessarily about this post (altho i funking love this tune and I too blame mum for such wonders) but about how gripped i am about your choices for song of the week.
even if i do not like the song you so eloquently describe, i too download the tune and check my opinion after having read your detailed descriptions. i went so far as describing your blog to a friend as "bit of an insight into the mind of a music generator", what with your knowledge and varied ideas brimming over. he then went on to pick out a fav quote ; "the song moves like the castle, a rusty shambolic mess, on the verge of toppling at any moment".
we love you, in short. and thank you for your insight. i will go on bragging about your song of the week blog to all my mates. but only if you too, brag about your fav monkey two.
xxx

 

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