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" I had dreams there were clouds in my coffee " Carly Simon from 'You're so Vain'


This is from the 'Sons of Anarchy' soundtrack. I only watched two episodes but really like this cover of the 5th Dimension's 'Age of Aquarius / Let the Sun Shine In' by the band The Forest Rangers. 


Remember the song well from childhood. All through the Seventies, even in my conservative home town, the residue of the Sixties drifted around our lives. We were told of Manson-like cults and the dangers of backward written songs by The Beatles and Led Zepplin. 




Mostly I remember astrology as replacing religion. Never fascinated with my United Church of Canada Sunday School roots but the star signs appealed somehow. When lost as a young man, people I trusted sent me to get a personal palm reading and horoscope. These did not get to the root of the problem which I found later as personal trauma and systematic limitation of creativity and personality. 


So this song is brilliant as it keeps the essence of the original as a type of question rather than a statement. Somehow both versions are about a type of ascension. The first is a type of fate for the world that we will be ushered into a new age; the second is that the original was corrupted but the aspiration and desire for transcending the early and mid 20th century's pain and failings. Certainly that is what I long for more than anything so the song rings true. Being on the cusp (pardon the astrological pun) of the post war and tecnological generations, I can't quite buy into either pole. Here the cover version likely points to the loss of innocence combined with the need for chemical escape to try to find that ideal. 


I am content here in the middle neither hanging onto some hippy dream nor the cynicism/escapism of the recent times. To me this version just asks precisely for us to wrestle with it. 


Must say though I miss the wonderful tone shifts of the songs of these years along with the ideal of an ideal. 



To close, the power of these forces is not to be underestimated. Liberals today scoff at all this especially of the Evengelical movement in America. The nature and intensity of the energy is similar, powerful, influencial but limited. You cannot use logic to argue this part out of others as part of human nature. Education can impact it but it tends to manifest in your personal life if you dismiss it as some falsehood. I believe this is where art comes in. You can work with those drives in a way which really does not harm us like religion and social movements can.


There is only power now. They have appropriated it all. Oprah and the gurus on one end and the mega churches on the other. The powerful love this division and how it can be montized. The distractions keep us from the inequity, war and decedence of their control. Do not believe like the art world that we can overthrow this with a good installation. But you can liberate yourself and that is where is all begins. At least for me. 


Through the frightening wonder of the algorithm, this showed up one day. It to was from the Seventies and is quite astute and a good tune too.