Short Story in a Song— The Kinks’ “Picture Book” by S W Lauden

After countless thousands of hours spent thinking about rock and roll, I’ve decided The Kinks are the common denominator for most of my favorite music. Something Else by The Kinks (1967) was a go-to for years, but in the past decade I’ve spent more time with their misunderstood 1968 masterpiece The Kinks Are The Village…

Short Story in a Song— The Go-Go’s “Vacation” by S W Lauden

I usually write about songs that would make a great short story, but this time I actually did it. My take on “Vacation” is included in the new anthology, MURDER-A-GO-GO’S, out this week from Down & Out Books. Having lived through the band’s meteoric rise in the 80s, I always thought of this New Wave…

Short Story in a Song— Suprgrass’ “Caught by the Fuzz” by S W Lauden

  Britpop. Bands that defined this ad hoc 90s musical genre took their inspiration from previous decades—60s pop, 70s glam and punk, 80s new wave—blending them together into a vibe-y cultural cocktail. The best songs from the era delivered melodies, hooks and plenty of snotty attitude from the likes of Oasis, Blur, Elastica, Pulp and…

Short Story in a Song— The Menzingers’ “The Obituaries” by S.W. Lauden

Coming of age. Exploring independence. Adulting. These are well-worn themes in the arts. A quick glance at the bookshelf reveals classics like The Catcher in The Rye by J.D. Salinger, Beloved by Toni Morrison and The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton. Likewise, many bands have explored similar territory with songs like “Suburban Home” by Descendents,” “Burnout”…

Short Story in a Song— Buzzcocks’ “Ever Fallen In Love” by S.W. Lauden

I recently read an excellent essay called “Playing House” in Heather Havrilesky‘s latest collection, What If This Were Enough? In it, she recounts a doomed relationship from many years ago. He pretended to be something he was not—happy, together—and though she saw through it, she pretended to want to share in his fantasy. She knew it was self-destructive…