Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Song Lyric of the Day (Van Morrison, on a Mental State Detrimental to Starbucks)

“And you know
I'm so wired-up
Don't need no coffee in my cup.”—Van Morrison, “Jackie Wilson Said (I’m in Heaven When You Smile”), from his Saint Dominic’s Preview LP (1972)

Yes, a prior post of mine hailed this most exultant, roof-raising of tunes. But this month 40 years ago, Warner Brothers released “Jackie Wilson Said” as the lead single of the Saint Dominic’s Preview album by Van Morrison. I can’t think of a better choice, even though it never achieved the success of “Brown-Eyed Girl” or “Domino.” (Equally inexplicably, it did not become a regular part of his shows until nearly a decade later.)

More’s the pity. I’m not sure why this musician—as legendary in concert as much for all-around cussedness as for his extraordinary talent—has ever managed to produce so many songs of joy, let alone so many love songs of unsurpassed tenderness. But never mind—just revel in this one, from its infectiously rousing opening a cappella vocalizing by Van the Man to the triumphantly affirmative sax at its closing. It’s one of those tunes of glory you wish would never end.

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