17 September 2007

How amazing is Andrew Bird?

I've recently fallen in love with a musician named Andrew Bird. He's a violinist, a mandolinist, a glockenspielist, a guitarist, and a phenomenal whistler, among many other things. And, best of all, he does all of these things in one song by looping back. His lyrics can be enigmatic at times (according to Andrew himself, he just says words that feel right), but at other times there is so much subtle meaning.

Here's one of my favorites, called Imitosis:

He's keeping busy
Yeah he's bleeding stones
With his machinations and his palindromes
It was anything but hear the voice
Anything but hear the voice
It was anything but hear the voice
That says that we're all basically alone

Poor Professor Pynchon had only good intentions
When he put his Bunsen burners all away
And turning to a playground in a Petri dish
Where single cells would swing their fists
At anything that looks like easy prey
In this nature show that rages every day
It was then he heard his intuition say

We were all basically alone
And despite what all his studies had shown
That what's mistaken for closeness
Is just a case of mitosis
And why do some show no mercy
While others are painfully shy
Tell me doctor can you quantify
He just wants to know the reason why
The reason why

Why do they congregate in groups of four
Scatter like a billion spores
And let the wind just carry them away
How can kids be so mean
Our famous doctor tried to glean
As he went home at the end of the day
In this nature show that rages every day
It was then he heard his intuition say

We were all basically alone
Despite what all his studies had shown
That what's mistaken for closeness
Is just a case of mitosis
Sure fatal doses of malcontent through osmosis
And why do some show no mercy
While others are painfully shy
Tell me doctor, can you quantify
The reason why?


Watch him in live performance. He does some interesting rhythm and variations of the lyrics, so that you aren't going to see him just play the same version of the song that you'd hear on the CD. Maybe it's just that he was a violinist from the age of four (and I love string players), but he is one of my all-time favorites. And he won me over pretty quickly, considering I just downloaded his albums two weeks ago.

He was in my area just last week, but I missed it because I was sick, didn't have a ride, and didn't have time to convert my friends to love his music. Next time...

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