Saturday, January 10, 2009

40. Indiana Jones in Shifflett's Hollow (I Belong to this Band - Eighty Five Years of Sacred Harp Recordings)

So, I've decided to start singing with a Sacred Harp group, and I'll take questions about it here in this blog! I expect several fabricated questions from my audience of eight.

Doodle doodle dee. Bum bum bum BAAAAA no honey don't yank that. No honey don't yank that. No honey don't yank that. Dum deedle no honey don't

"Hey Smilin' Tyler, what's Sacred Harp singing?"

JESUS FUCK don't do that. What's Sacred Harp music? Well, I describe it as "an American folk tradition featuring starkly modal shouting unto the Lord" but I don't know what "starkly modal" or even "modal" means, so look at the wikipedia.

"Smilin' Tyler, can I get a link to the wikipedia for Sacred Harp?"

You realize that you expended more energy typing that request than typing ',' you realize this do you not.

"You're a penis." No honey don't yank that.

"Isn't religious music for pussies?"

Shouldn't you start shaving before you ask questions like that?

"Religious music is for pussies."

I'm not a pussy.

"Smilin' Tyler, I've heard you're a pussy."

I'm not a pussy no honey don't yank that. Well if you yank that the cat will do that. No honey don't yank that.


OK, how much religious music have you actually heard that isn't sung by Amy Grant or Michael W. Smith? The classical liturgical tradition is FULL of absolute asskickers, some of which have appeared in this very blog. The blog you are reading. The blog you love to read. Sacred Harp music is the most asskicking of all asskicking god music for the following reasons one through five inclusive.

1) Everyone in Sacred Harp songs is about to die alone. 2) It sounds like it. 3) Sacred Harp music is more about the Old Testament God who liked to set orphanages on fire rather than the New Testament Goodtime Jesus who loves his donkey. 4) Sacred Harp conventions sound like a bunch of Appalachian pagans getting geared up to skin Indiana Jones. 5) There is always one toothless maniac who sings whatever the hell he or she wants in a screeching voice and no-one will stop him or her b/c a) she's older than them and Respect Yer Elders and b) he or she probably is the moonshine supplier and don't piss of The Man. I want to befriend this toothless maniac and ideally become him or her sooner rather than later.

"Smilin' Tyler, you're a pussy for completely different reasons that were not addressed in the above conversation."

M... Mother?? I THOUGHT YOU WERE... DEAD!!!!

Postscript: They were a bunch of really nice people, there was a 12-year old who led one song, when it came to my turn to pick a song I asked to sing "Cuba (401)," and we even sang "The Christian Warfare (179)," which is my favorite song on the "Band" disc. Put it this way: this is the only way you're ever going to get me in a Unitarian church.

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