Thursday, November 1, 2012

The Weatherman Is Crying Cus He's Happy

If you were in Austin in the early nineties, you had the chance to see an amazing band called Shoulders. We only saw them a few times, probably under ten, and their performances and wonderful lyrics still play in my head.

The lead singer, Michael Slatterly, had a raspy voice, and dressed in an Austin musician's uniform- sweaty, poly-blend button-down, old man's hat, and non-committal facial hair. Being the front man, he's really the only one I remember. There was a bass drum set up on the front edge of the stage, and he would whale on it, driving the audience with his mania.

The music was raucous; the entire band (besides maybe the drummer) definitely danced around the stage.  Their shows were like a fun house; everything seemed exciting and happy until you listened more closely to the lyrics. That's when things got dark, warped, and slightly menacing.

After we left Austin, I found a cd of their music. I was thrilled, at least until I actually played it. Whoever produced it had trimmed off the razor edges. What was left was sadder, colder, and quieter than a tombstone.

So, because their lyrics keep going around in my head-

Outside Lulu's bar and pool
a pack of wolves gather round
they howl and drool.
They'll eat anything that bleeds...

It's just a charm not a jewel
it's just a charm from a fool...

In trashman's shoes

Uncle Akin was sore at the world
For what I do not know
But when he spoke to the flowers they
did grow grow grow!

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