Wednesday, December 19, 2012

December CommQuote

Zadie Smith's philosophical reflections in The New Yorker (December 17 issue) on her journey toward appreciating Joni Mitchell's artistry by way of Tintern Abbey (now you have to read it)  has me thinking for our December quote I should showcase Ms. Mitchell's most famous media lyric, You Turn Me On, I'm a Radio (it was a single if I'm not mistaken, and she doesn't have many of those).  Although Smith's essay, titled "Some Note on Attunement: A Voyage Around Joni Mitchell," is more focused on the album Blue, this song comes from the excellent follow-up, For the Roses. The only reference to media on Blue that comes to mind is mention of television in the devastatingly dark portrait of Richard in The Last Time I Saw Richard (And he drinks at home now most nights with the TV on/And all the house lights left up bright...). So I'll go with this radio song which is a much happier celebration of love--and in this holiday season what's not to broadcast about that?

You Turn Me On, I'm A Radio (Joni Mitchell)

If you're driving into town
With a dark cloud above you
Dial in the number
Who's bound to love you
Oh honey you turn me on
I'm a radio
I'm a country station
I'm a little bit corny
I'm a wildwood flower
Waving for you
Broadcasting tower
Waving for you
And I'm sending you out
This signal here
I hope you can pick it up
Loud and clear
I know you don't like weak women
You get bored so quick
And you don't like strong women
'Cause they're hip to your tricks
It's been dirty for dirty
Down the line
But you know
I come when you whistle
When you're loving and kind
But if you've got too many doubts
If there's no good reception for me
Then tune me out, 'cause honey
Who needs the static
It hurts the head
And you wind up cracking
And the day goes dismal
From "Breakfast Barney"
To the sign-off prayer
What a sorry face you get to wear
I'm going to tell you again now
If you're still listening there
If you're driving into town
With a dark cloud above you
Dial in the number
Who's bound to love you
If you're lying on the beach
With the transistor going
Kick off the sand cause honey
The love's still flowing
If your head says forget it
But your heart's still smoking
Call me at the station
The lines are open
Remember, you can access The New Yorker from Penn Libraries e-resources.

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