John's Bolt Hole

Random acts of connectivity

Random acts of connectivity

The neural pathways through our brains seem to be able to throw random thoughts together in ways that defy any logical assumptions, unless of course you are seriously into seriously weird stuff.  So, on the one hand, and like a significant proportion of the UK, my brain is trying to come to terms with the outcome of last week’s ‘Brexit’ vote, and on the other hand, I’m indulging in a ‘let’s pretend it didn’t happen’ daydream, and seeking solace in music.  So all around us is a political train wreck, as everyone who engineered this crisis chooses to walk away and leave someone else to clear up the mess.  In an attempt to escape ‘resignation bingo’, I listen to music.  My musical tastes are my own, and are rooted in history, but I kid myself I’m open to new genres and new sounds, so long as it’s not boybands, rap or weird stuff.

These random acts of connectivity came about via two different routes.  Firstly, some while ago, in a fit of gross envy, I learned from a very good friend, that the guests at the wedding of a family friend were entertained by John Illsley, previously the bass player with Dire Straits.  My endless worship of Mark Knopfler’s guitar playing activates my music radar when I hear of anyone associated with MK.  Subsequent investigations uncovered the work of John Illsley, and Amazon kindly delivered a digital download of his album ‘Long Shadows’.  We will return to this shortly.

The second random act came about from hearing a track on the car radio.  I tend to listen to BBC Radio 6M, partly because it is not a commercial station, and partly because it plays a lot of non-mainstream music.  Out in the car a few days ago, a particular, totally unidentifiable track caught my ear to such an extent that when I got home I trawled through the BBC website in the hope of uncovering the playlist and identifying the song.  It worked!  I found the song, found the album, bought it, and absolutely love it.  The band is exmagician, and the album is ’Scan the Blue’.

So what’s the connectivity?  My word, this is cheesy, but one of John Illsley’s tracks is ‘Ship of Fools’ (not the only song with that title, as any fan of The Doors will tell you).  Here’s some of the lyric:

 A land of fear and dirty tricks

Will take much more than words to fix

Those monkeys walk away scot free

Well it never made much sense to me

Well the ship of fools goes round again

Ship of fools without a plan

All are lost , they’re all at sea

There’s no place to hide, no sanctuary.

He wrote this before Brexit… premonition?

The opening track on ‘’Scan the Blue’ is called ‘Kiss That Wealth Goodbye’:

Fire your blame

Round here they all fear

So i’m seizing the day

Hotheads can just guess and whisper away

But I make a fistful daily

I came to bless

I came to heal it all

And swindle the best

On my call they all fall

Then spring to confess

Round here is all for the taking

Light up my face

Straighten my tie

Jump of the page

See your hope whizzing by

But they all like

That I fed a lie

they all just

let go of their high hopes

And kiss it goodbye

But I’m here to sell, is it sinking in?

It’s all empty air, but they keep tuning in

Now they all like, I fed a lie

They sell just sit there without a care

And kiss that wealth goodbye

Get it? Brexit: Ship of Fools: Kiss that Wealth Goodbye.

Random connectivity, or is it?

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