Posts Tagged 'woody guthrie'

Klezmatics Back in Rome!

guthrie mosaic The Klezmatics are coming back to Rome! So this is a reminder to all music lovers (at least those who happen to live in Rome) to get your tickets. The best group in America won a grammy with their last album, Wonder Wheel, a compilation of lesser known Woody Guthrie lyrics, which also happens to be their first album entirely in English. You can see a live performance here. Click here for details on the upcoming concert at the Auditorium.

The following observation has been attributed to Allen Ginsberg: “…if you’re able to listen to this music (the Klezmatics’) without seeing God you must be fucking blind.”

Mermaid’s Avenue

Mermaid Avenue that’s the street
Where the fast and slow folks meet,
Where the cold ones meet the hot ones
Just a block from Coney’s beach.
Mermaid Avenue that’s the place
Where the wolves and haybags chase
In big fur coats and bathing suits
They’re in the raggeldy race.

Chorus:
But there’s never been a mermaid here
On Mermaid Avenue
No, I’ve never seen a mermaid here
On Mermaid Avenue
I’ve seen hags and wags and witches;
And I’ve seen a shark or two
My five years that I’ve lived along
Old Mermaid’s Avenue

Mermaid Avenue that’s the street
Where the lox and bagles meet,
Where the hot dog meets the mustard
Where the sour meets the sweet;
Where the beer flows to the ocean
(Where the halvah meets the pickle)
Where the wine runs to the sea;
Why they call it Mermaid Avenue
That’s more than I can see.

Mermaid Avenue that’s the street
Where the saint and sinners meet;
Where the grey hair meets the wave curls
Where the cops don’t ever sleep;
Where they pay some cops to stop you
When you hit that Sea Gate gate;
Where them bulls along that wire fence
Scare the mermaids all away

Mermaid Avenue that’s the street
Where the sun and storm clouds meet;
Where the ocean meets that rockwall
Where the boardwalk meets the beach;
Where the prettiest of the maidulas
Leave their legprints in that sand
Just beneath our lovesoaked boardwalk
With the bravest of our lads.

Mermaid Avenue that’s the street
Where all colors of goodfolks meet;
Where the smokefish meets the pretzel
Where the borscht sounds like the seas;
This is where hot Mexican Chili
Meets Chop Suey and meatballs sweet;
Mermaid Avenue she’s a nervous jerk
But, still, she’s hard to beat.

Woody Guthrie


Contrasting Views

"Literalism is a feature of boorish translators." Cicero "The clumsiest literal translation is a thousand times more useful than the prettiest paraphrase." Nabokov

The Faerie Queene

"John Ashbery said reading the Faerie Queene was like reading an endless beautiful comic strip." Kenneth Koch

Sigmund Freud

"Everywhere I go, I find a poet has been there before me."

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August 2017
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