Monday, February 2, 2009

Movement in A-minor

Mystery of Love
Words and music copyright (c) 1986
by Robert Stacy McCain

1. I don't understand it --
Your leaving me this way.
It's not the way I planned it.
I wanted you to stay.
And I can see no reason
Why you want to go.
If love is out of season,
Well, no one told me so.

CHORUS: Mystery of love (repeat etc.)

2. It came without a warning,
Came home and found you gone.
Early in the morning,
Just like in the song.
How could you desert me?
I treated you so well.
Do you really want to hurt me
And put me through this hell?


BRIDGE: I don't, I don't, I don't understand it.
(Repeat, etc.)


3. We looked so good together,
Or so I had been told.
I thought love was forever,
To have and to hold.
And I believed all the lies
That you told me.
Never realized
What a fool I'd be.
Now I understand the pain
And misery,
But won't you please explain
This mystery?

* * * * *

This lyric I reprint here, by way of indirect explanation for a comment I left over at the League of Ordinary Gentlemen, apologizing for my ill-tempered prosecution of an idiotic flame war.

Try to hear that song in your mind, would you? It is in A-minor, the chord pattern hypnotically repetitive, with a heavy bass synthesizer riff and the drums thundering down at about 118 bpm. There's also a harmonic overlay of call-and-response vocal in the chorus.

Try to imagine that song, with the Bar-Kays/Club Nouveau/Gap Band type of funk-rock arrangment and production I had in mind. And though it was written 23 years ago, I'm certain that if I could record it even today the way I heard it in my mind back then, it would at least make the mid-level of the R&B charts.

Well, none of the musicians I could find around suburban Atlanta circa 1986 was into anything like that, and I certainly couldn't afford to pay session cats and studio time to rehearse and record it. But when I tell you that journalism was not my original career choice, and that I ended up working in the newspaper business as a "fallback" option, I am not kidding.

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