Sunday, March 31, 2013


 Patti Smith found redemption after a near death experience to achieve her greatest success with this profound and provocative confessional catechism.  Smith broke her neck in a fall from a stage in Tampa, Florida onto a concrete orchestra pit.  She spent a year recovering and reflecting on Christianity:    "The myth of Christ is still exciting and stimulating to me, and whether he's a real guy or not doesn't really matter anymore. I did say 'Jesus died for somebody's sins but not mine', and I still believe that.  I wasn't saying that I didn't like Christ or didn't believe in him, just that I wanted to take the responsibility for the things I do -- I didn't want some mythical or ethical symbol taking the credit for what I do.  When I steal, if I commit murder or adultery, whatever I do -- I believe that crime goes hand in hand with art, and I didn't want some unknown entity taking the blame or credit for anything I do.  I like coming on the earth fresh. I mean, it's bad enough being a Smith, 'cos the word Smith means Cain, and being a true Smith it means I came on the earth marked anyway, and marked once is enough.  Also, I'm a very Old Testament kind of person in that in the Old Testament man communicated with God directly; in the New Testament man has to communicate with God through Christ. Well, I'm a one-to-one girl and I have always sought to communicate with God through myself.  And I feel that was one of the reasons I fell offstage.  I fell during 'Ain't It Strange'. Now all this sounds like mythical bull but it is a truth -- just like the guy at Altamont got shot during 'Under My Thumb', I fell just as I was saying 'hand of God, I feel the finger'.  And I did feel the finger push me right over. It was like, I spend so much time challenging God when I perform and in everything I do, trying to get God to answer me, trying to feel some kind of cerebral of sexual communication with God, that I feel it was his way of saying, 'you keep battering against my door and I'm gonna open that door and you'll fall in'.  And that's how I think Hendrix died, that's what I was saying in 'Land' when Johnny felt himself disintegrating and went through the black tube -- that to me is like Hendrix who also wished to communicate with higher orders, whether evil or good, who also sought wisdom.  And if you keep knocking on the door, the ultimate communication with God is death. Because God is an energy-force and has nothing to do with earth. God is after life, He is something that I do believe exists. He's something with which we have complete cerebral and sexual communication when we're dead.  I do wish to communicate with God but not at the expense of my life -- I'm very into this plane of being, I like being here.  There was a moment -- real or surreal it doesn't matter -- when I had my fall that I felt I could have gone through the black tube, I felt myself disintegrating and I didn't wanna go.  And that's why in 'Till Victory' it says 'God do not seize me, please, till victory' because I felt like my work wasn't done. In 'Ain't It Strange' I keep calling for some kind of communication with God, but I've had a certain communication now which is in a way 'you'd better watch your step, Smith'.  So I'm re-evaluating my state of being, I'm learning to accept a more New Testament kind of communication. So as part of that acceptance I have to re-evaluate exactly who Christ was.  To me, the greatest thing about Christ is not necessarily Christ himself but the belief of the people that have kept him alive through the centuries -- the guy must have had powerful magnetism."

 'Easter' was produced by Jimmy Iovine at Record Plant Studios in New York; and House of Music in West Orange, New Jersey with Patti Smith on vocals and guitar; Lenny Kaye on guitar, bass guitar, and vocals; Jay Dee Daugherty on drums and percussion; Ivan Kral on bass guitar, vocals, and guitar; and Bruce Brody on keyboards and synthesizer; with Richard Sohl and Allen Lanier on keyboards on "Space Monkey"; John Paul Fetta on bass on "Till Victory" & "Privilege"; Andi Ostrowe on percussion on "Ghost Dance"; Jim Maxwell on bagpipes on "Easter"; and Tom Verlaine did the arrangement on "We Three".  'Easter' rose to number thirty-four in Sweden, twenty in the US, sixteen in the UK, and number ten in Norway.

"Because the Night" was co-written with Bruce Springsteen.  It became her biggest hit, going to number thirteen in the US and five in the UK.

Take me now baby here as I am 
Pull me close, try and understand 
Desire is hunger is the fire I breathe 
Love is a banquet on which we feed 
Come on now try and understand 
The way I feel when I'm in your hands 
Take my hand come undercover 
They can't hurt you now, 
Can't hurt you now, can't hurt you now 
Because the night belongs to lovers 
Because the night belongs to lust 
Because the night belongs to lovers 
Because the night belongs to us 
Have I doubt when I'm alone 
Love is a ring, the telephone 
Love is an angel disguised as lust 
Here in our bed until the morning comes 
Come on now try and understand 
The way I feel under your command 
Take my hand as the sun descends 
They can't touch you now, 
Can't touch you now, can't touch you now 
Because the night belongs to lovers
Because the night belongs to us
Because the night belongs to lovers
Because the night belongs to us
With love we sleep 
With doubt the vicious circle 
Turn and burns 
Without you I cannot live 
Forgive, the yearning burning 
I believe it's time, too real to feel 
So touch me now, touch me now, touch me now 
Because the night belongs to lovers
Because the night belongs to us
Because the night belongs to lovers
Because the night belongs to us


Easter Sunday, we were walking.
Easter Sunday, we were talking.
Isabel, my little one, take my hand. Time has come.
Isabella, all is glowing.
Isabella, all is knowing.
And my heart, Isabella.
And my head, Isabella.
Frederick and Vitalie, savior dwells inside of thee.
Oh, the path leads to the sun. Brother, sister, time has come.
Isabella, all is glowing.
Isabella, all is knowing.
Isabella, we are dying.
Isabella, we are rising.
I am the spring, the holy ground,
The endless seed of mystery,
The thorn, the veil, the face of grace,
The brazen image, the thief of sleep, 
The ambassador of dreams, the prince of peace.
I am the sword, the wound, the stain.
Scorned transfigured child of Cain.
I rend, I end, I return.
Again I am the salt, the bitter laugh.
I am the gas in a womb of light, the evening star,
The ball of sight that leads that sheds the tears of Christ
Dying and drying as I rise tonight.
Isabella, we are rising.
Isabella, we are rising

full album:

1."Till Victory" (Patti Smith, Lenny Kaye) -- 2:45
2."Space Monkey" (Smith, Ivan Kral, Tom Verlaine) -- 4:04
3."Because the Night" (Smith, Bruce Springsteen) -- 3:32
4."Ghost Dance" (Smith, Kaye) -- 4:40
5."Babelogue" (Smith) -- 1:25
6."Rock N Roll Nigger"  (Smith, Kaye)  -- 3:13
7."Privilege (Set Me Free)" (Mel London, Mike Leander, Psalm 23) -- 3:27
8."We Three" (Smith) -- 4:19
9."25th Floor" (Smith, Kral) -- 4:01
10."High on Rebellion" (Smith) -- 2:37
11."Easter" (Smith, Jay Dee Daugherty) -- 6:15
12"Godspeed" (Smith, Kral) -- 6:09

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