“Write a Song a Song / Angeline” by Mickey Newbury


When I was a kid, unfinished business was the go-to explanation for ghosts in movies – the body fails, but a desire remains, of such strength that it bends the normal world, invades it in ways that exceed the rational. Newbury sings two stories of interrupted desire. At first accompanied plainly, stranger arrangements start to creep around him, the most incredible to me being the choral voices, like unearthly trains. How were they recorded? Sounding peculiar at first, but terrifying when they carry out the ominous coda. If the lights are off, the voices push and pull the space around you, and you don’t know what they want. On one hand, I find the songs sincere and heartbreaking, never lacking in authenticity or depth. But on the other, I take heed of the forbidding feelings that follow those voices, that infuse the image of a man sitting in a dark room, focused on a love that can’t be satisfied.

-Morgan Vo

IMG_20151101_1006141566653826Morgan Vo works with poetry and music. He lives in Brooklyn, NY.

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