Tuesday, October 10, 2017

365 Days of Defiance, Day 283: I don't have to put up with you giving me the third degree

Today, something a little different. It's the birthday of perhaps my favorite female vocalist of all time: (and yes, even Jane Wiedlin and Björk have to take a back seat to her) Kirsty MacColl. Kirsty would have been 58 today, and I mourn for her as well as celebrate her: she died in 2000 in a tragic, criminal boating accident, and I miss the many miraculous songs she would have recorded had she not died, and her spirit, humor, and joy in the world of music. She has always been very special to me.

One of my favorite Kirsty songs is from her 1991 LP Electric Landlady and is an early example of "Mambo MacColl": her songs inspired by her love of Cuban and Caribbean rhythm. I especially recommend her final 2000 album Tropical Brainstorm for many examples of Kirsty embracing the constructs of world music. "My Affair" is a protest song, a song of defiance, but not political: it's personal, as Kirsty always was, an intimate expression of individual spirit and inner fire. It may not be comics, and it may not be political, but for today, at least, please remember Kirsty and her music. Here's "My Affair."

"My Affair" by Kirsty MacColl (1991), composed by Kirsty MacColl/Mark E. Nevin

When I was just a child
My folks would drive me wild
They'd spy upon my every move
Until it drove me to despair
They told me what to wear
They told me not to cut my hair
But that's all over now
I had to tell them anyhow

It's my affair
Where I go and what I do
It's my affair oh yeah
It's my affair
It's up to me and not to you
It's my affair

That's the way I want to keep it
I kissed the boy in secret
Thrilled me to the very core
I couldn't stop I wanted more and
I didn't hear the door and
They caught me on the floor
With my affair

And when we first got wed
We used to stay in bed
All day and night all night and day
We bedded half our lives away
But that's all over now
We move in higher circles
Chomping through the upper crust
I couldn't see you for the dust
And then you met that girl
Who left you with your money spent
And now it's no concern of yours
If I sleep with the President

It's my affair
And if I don't come home tonight
It's my affair alright
It's my affair
Who I see is up to me
It's my affair

That's how I want to keep it
I kiss the boys in secret
Hiding in the parking lot
Is just as far as I have got but
If the phone should ring and
There's no one there
Then it's my affair

Eso es asunto de ella
Donde va why lo que hare

Well it's all over now
You've seen the last of me
And I don't have to put up with you
Giving me the third degree
So you go on your way
And don't come sneaking round the back door
Trying to get yourself

It's my affair
And if I don't come home tonight
It's my affair alright
It's my affair
Who I see is up to me
It's my affair

I miss you very much, Kirsty.

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