Billie Holiday & Lester Young –
Mean To Me
“Whenever somebody is near, it must be great fun to be mean to me. “
I have secrets aplenty, but you’ll understand that I have very few to share. That said, for almost a month now I have thought a thought, one I would like to finally expose to you.
There are songs in the world that spark a desire for improvement in oneself. This is not hard to imagine. Upon listening to a piece of such exception an ear may be turned and interest may pique. This has happened to you and to us all. A voice of astounding artistry may compel longing for refinement in your very own. A lyricist of such striking lucidity will have us scrambling for the worn pencil lacking a nib and the notepad that has yet to be purchased and may never be. These moments, these sounds, although rare, exist and so does the song that promotes the desire for dance.
We must however – before ridicule and scorn become today’s theme – make a slight but salient distinction; almost all songs can produce a foot tap, a nod and a sway of hips, but it’s the song that incites the desire to perfect the art of the shimmy and the jive that is the rarest of all beasts’. I do not wish to replicate a Wallace and Vega moment. There is no awkward silence to veil with barefoot dance. This is the very secret I wish to share. For almost a month now I have dreamt a dream… of waltz.
Like a child beginning his list, I want to waltz with the girl.
I want the dance they would surely have danced had older film dared to allow their lovers to touch in their most private of homes – the hallways where love’s never been. I want God to give us just three minutes of Her and our time in black and white. I want the click and clack of heels on wood to tease the air with the threat to eclipse the crackle of vinyl song. I want white walls flush with quivering candle light. I want smiles that last and muscle that fail to strain. I want bodies’ tight, thigh to thigh, but fluid movement. I want shutters as windows with street noise augmented on opening. I want to see death to the rigidity of waltz – for sight over shoulders to cease and make way for a waltz of fervent admirers.
Yet to all of this, the details of a voyeur, I would be oblivious – because she was there.
She would be there and dancing.
And I want it all to this song and this song only.
“(Whenever somebody is near it must be great fun to be mean to me.) You shouldn’t for can’t you see what you mean to me?”
[Buy A Musical Romance.]