Thursday, March 17, 2016

Deconstructing Uptown Funk. 'Take a sip, sign a check Julio, get the stretch'

I have no right to be humming Uptown Funk all the time and even mouthing the refrain under my breath 'girls hit your halleluiah, girls hit your halleluiah'  I don't know what the heck it's talking about. It says, 'this one for them hood girls' and I'm just a  middle class nerd who should stick to Celine Dion.

Here is a very good example of how a kind of scattered non linear sequence of ideas can hot wire your brain while the laborious ordered sentences of politicians melt into the ether.  When Bruno Mars says, "cause Uptown Funk gon' give it to you" my emotions go haywire and I feel as happy as a butterfly in Martha Stewart's flower garden.

Marco Rubio said to the electorate, “Let’s dispel this fiction that Barack Obama doesn’t know what he’s doing. He knows exactly what he’s doing,” If instead, he had turned to Chris Christie and said, "I'm too hot (hot damn), called a police and a fireman. I'm going to take Uptown Funk straight to the White House and it's gon' give it to you and all the country. Uh, uh, uh, UH!," he would he at the top of the leader board instead of back in his precariously mortgaged house scratching his head.

I'm not sure what Uptown Funk is gon' to give me but it makes me feel included in a way that no political promise does. Mark Ronson, the composer, has figured out that you don't need to make sense to everybody, if you drop a string of captivating phrases and finish off with uh, uh, uh, uh. I'm too hot (hot damn), make a dragon wanna retire man. Nonsensical but kind of adorable. 

You know how Hemingway figured out that you don't need a bunch of adjectives and adverbs to write persuasively and emotionally?  Well Mark Ronson has figured out that nuance is a bigger motivator than logic. He's figured out that the mind is like a xylophone and you just tap this strip and that strip and you have a grip on the entire country. 'Take a sip, sign a check, Julio, get the stretch.'

Hillary, start rapping!



  1. love it. Maybe we should insist the debates are staged like Broadway shows with professional musicians, crew, etc. At least all that money would be supporting the arts.

    1. That's it, Chris. A great idea. I agree about the money. What a waste. Better to give it to those poor people in Flint.

  2. Thank goodness I found your blog and now I can tell you what I badly want to say. I just finished reading Three Daughters; and I mean just now. The last page on About Author had your blog link and here I am.
    I am an author of short stories from India writing my first novel. Honestly, I am too cocooned in my reading habits and have hardly read any literature apart from those emanating from the Indian subcontinent, UK or the USA. So I was very intrigued to read the blurb of Three Daughters on Kindle and promptly downloaded it.
    Trust me when I say that I haven't been able to put it down. If you see my Instagram account (debosmita_lifesmanywhispers), you will see a photo with a caption that I am reading your story even in office!
    I loved the story and everything in it. It was classic and vintage storytelling in a clean voice. I discovered so much about your culture while weeping, laughing, despairing and rejoicing with your characters.
    I will seek out your other books. Any recommendations you have?
    Sorry for such a long comment. I think I ranted quite a bit. Can I connect with you on social media or email?
    Warm regards

    1. Such a beautiful message to receive early Sunday morning here in East Hampton. Thank you, thank you.
      You have much to write about - a rich heritage that will intrigue and interest readers. Short stories are much harder than a novel so I urge you to do the larger piece. You can always reach me on this blog.
      I am weaning myself off of social media until the circus of the U.S. elections are over.
      Thank you again for writing.