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Alice's Restraurant Updated

 
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Fintan
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Joined: 18 Jan 2006
Posts: 8274

PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 5:43 pm    Post subject: Alice's Restraurant Updated Reply with quote

It is somewhat of a tradition to listen to Arlo Guthrie's
Alices' Restraurant on Thanksgiving (because the dump
in the song was closed on Thanksgiving).

But for a change, here's an updated version by Arlo,
which has roughly the same format as the original:

http://breakfornews.com/audio/Alices_Restraurant_Updated.mp3

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Hocus Locus



Joined: 22 Sep 2006
Posts: 850
Location: Lost in anamnesis, cannot forget my way out

PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 7:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Thanks to 'wunderhorn1' @ everything2.com

You can get anything you want, at Alice's Restaurant
You can get anything you want, at Alice's Restaurant
Walk right in it's around the back
Just a half a mile from the railroad track

(Arlo drops out)
You can get anything you want, at Alice's Restaurant

No, nooo! You can't start singing loud just at the end if I quit singing! [laughter] You would've thought after all this time you'd've learned by now! If you wanna end war and stuff you've gotta sing loud all the time, so people can hear you!

Now, I know this is a long song, believe me, I know how long it is, even on the record when it come out it was pretty long, what, eighteen minutes like I said or something, and I'm not sitting here trying to make it any longer, but I can feel it. I know there's people sitting in this very room tonight that don't believe that songs can change the world, or that songs can change the destiny of nations.

I don't blame you. I wouldn't have thought so myself. 'Course I know something that some of you may not know, but I was reminded of it during the last election, see, I remembered when Jimmy Carter was elected President, 'cause I got an invitation to his inauguration, and I knew I had to go, 'cause I knew it'd be the only one I ever got. [laughter] Been right so far. But I went down to Washinton, D.C. -- I ain't making this up now, this is real -- I went down to Washington, and it's just like you see on TV, people partying and stuff, and everything was fine until along toward evening somebody come around, tapped me on the shoulder, and I turned around, and it was Chip Carter, the President's son.

I said, "Hi, Chip!" -- I recognized him, he was about my age -- he said,

"Arlo, I've been looking everywhere for you."

I said, "Chip, how come?"

He said, "Arlo, I've got something very important to tell you."

And I said, "Chip, what is it?"

He said, "Arlo, we were moving our stuff into the White House, and in the Nixon Record Library we found a copy of your record, Alice's Restaurant." [laughter]

I looked at Chip Carter, I looked deep into the man's soul and I said, "Chiiii-iiiiip! Was it opened?"

And it slow motion he noded, yes, it had been opened. Now I want you folks to know that I did not think about that for a long time, until recently, when we was all thinking 'bout Richard Nixon when he passed away, and... I see some people here who may not know, see, but Richard Nixon was the President of the United States, [laughter] and he used to like to tape stuff. I mean, if you can imagine a world before cassette decks and VCRs was everywhere, you can imagine a man who was truly ahead of his time! He taped everything that went on in the White House, and everything was fine until one day they started playing back the tapes! [laughter] People found out what was going on in there! But it wasn't anything that was on any tape that got the man in trouble, so much as it was what he had erased from the tapes, and there was one particular famous gap in one of the tapes that I was thinking about one night, when I said to myself,

"Arlo, how many things in the world are eighteen minutes and twenty seconds long?"

[laughter, applause] Well? [laughter] How many things in the world ARE exactly eighteen minutes and twenty seconds long? Probably just a coincidence, but it's good enough for me.

So when the song comes around on the guitar, remember that songs can change the destiny of nations, even if it's only by coincidence. You just have to know the words, have the feelin', and wait for it come around again on the guitar.


___
You can get anything you want
At Alice's Restaurant (Exceptin' Alice...)
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Ormond



Joined: 14 Apr 2006
Posts: 1556
Location: Belly of the Beast, Texas

PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 8:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If Chip was right on what he and Arlo were thinking about that famous gap in the Nixon White House tapes, sure does through a new lens onto what they really had on Nixon to get him to resign! (would throw a whole new lens on Nixon, in general, heh heh).

What does eighteen minutes and twenty seconds imply? (No need to answer, I get it. Whatever it was, though, Bill Clinton could have done it in three minutes...).

I must say that though I never get tired of hearing Alice's Restaurant, I expected Arlo would really have updated it. While downloading the .mp3, scenarios ran through my head.

1. Officer Obie would be Special Agent Billy Bob Obie, Jr., De-Parment of Homeland Security.

2. The envelope with Arlo's name on it at the bottom of the garbage pile would have been had a grocery list of cleaning fluids on it, "bottle of Chlorox and Mr. Clean for the restuarant....some dishwashing liquid".
And also a list of the rakes and shovels Arlo bought to load the garbage--only he would have called them "implements of mass destruction---one shovel, two rakes".

2. The questioning part of the song that occurs at the draft board would have been upgraded to an 'Extraordinary Rendition' conducted at "Gitmo".

I don't wanna be to picky though. I know--everybody's a critic, right Arlo? I'm just sayin'...The song still ROCKS!
There's another Arlo classic that could be updated too.

Here's the 1968 lyric. Now imagine how you'd re-phrase it for 2006!

Quote:
FLYIN' INTO LOS ANGELEEEEEZE

BRINGIN' IN A COUPLE OF KEYS*

OH, DON'T CHECK MY BAGS IF YOU PLEEZE MR CUSTOMS MAN.....


*Keys --- 60's slang for 'kilo' of marijuana...

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Hocus Locus



Joined: 22 Sep 2006
Posts: 850
Location: Lost in anamnesis, cannot forget my way out

PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 10:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ormond wrote:
1. Officer Obie would be Special Agent Billy Bob Obie, Jr., De-Parment of Homeland Security.

He would be passed over for Gitmo, too merciful "Kid, we don't want any hangins'...". William Obanhein (1924-1994) must have had a blast appearing as himself in the movie.

Quote:
"implements of mass destruction---

New Eschelons of detection and see-lection

Quote:
2. The questioning part of the song that occurs at the draft board would have been upgraded to an 'Extraordinary Rendition' conducted at "Gitmo".

Gitmo is so abhorrent to me though that if any could ever manage to rend some humor out of it, there would need to be a treatment so helpless and riveting -- even more so than leading a horse to glue -- Mel Brooks may not even touch it, he of The Inquisition -- What a Show! fame.

Just had a thought, 18-1/2 minutes and all. Maybe if I play the original 'Alice's Restaurant' recording backwards... listen for Nixon's voice...?

"You can get anything you want, at Alice's Restaurant..."
...[click! deedle-de-twip-twip. Click! Thunk.]...
"...no no noooo Checkers.... don't lick me there!"

Nope, zilch. Well it was a fun idea. The 'by the ears' thing was so kinky though. Unprecedented. Riveting. Wait a minute. Here's a challenge to dystopian hysterians -- if the whole [ears,scandal,"goona keep him",awww] progression was a beginning-to-end applied scripted psyop, and not a brillant backspin... what clues or connections could one scan for that would serve to peel away the apparent happenstance of it all?


___
As the night is leaving - silently retreating down an empty hall
Suddenly a stirring - finally recurring where I let it fall
Following the wanderings of a dream - a dream that keeps my soul alive
Believing in an open sky - believing in a love.
Dancing with a stranger - careless of the danger there within his smile
While the dew was forming - breathing in the morning like a sleeping child.
If the memory of the light should fade - horizons reaching cold and blue
Until your heart is free to fly - then I will keep the sun for you.
Until you touch the open sky - then I will keep the sun for you
Until we never say goodby - then I will keep the sun for you.

~Theme, "Midnight Express (1978)"
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Ormond



Joined: 14 Apr 2006
Posts: 1556
Location: Belly of the Beast, Texas

PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 11:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Gitmo is so abhorrent to me though that if any could ever manage to rend some humor out of it,


Important point. American culture has been taught during the last 30 years to be 'irreverent'. I hear people cut jokes about things that are serious matters too much as it is.
Case in point, I was working in an office when the Abu Girab scandle was released (by the government). Right away guys were cracking jokes like, "some guys would pay money to get walked naked on a leash by that hot little ****". That's when I realized that the release of that particular scandal, those particular images was a psyop. It was designed for the dumbed down American tv consumer to respond to the 'comic' elements.
It was, basically, from Vaudeville. Then followed on cue with the Nick Berg beheading that looked like one of those 70's low rent kung fu movies with the rubber head rolling shot. When the new looks surreal, it's scripted.
After all, the focus was the girl. The naked bodies of the prisoners were deliberately hooded---anonymous--just 'meat' in 'funny' positions. ha ha ha. Rumsfeld himself delivered a cue...."what's the big deal? reminds me of my fraternity days". (cue canned laugh track....drum rim shot--'bada beem, bada boom!' (applause)

John Cleese of Monty Python once explained that the whole premise of Monty Python slapstick was to take something so horrid--such as blood shooting out of someone who's just had a hand cut off---and prolongue it so long that the mind can't handle it and short circuits and the reaction is laughter. The coverage of the atrocities of this Occupation have often been handled just like that.

I strayed a bit too close to making light of it myself. These days, I agree the public needs to recover a bit of 'reverence' and draw the line on atrocity.

Perhaps Arlo considered such things and decided not to alter the original song too much. As presented, it seems such a contrast that as horrid as the Viet Nam war was, what's going on now is much worse, and more dangerous.
60's antiwar irreverent humor was directed only at the authority figures. The cop, the gung ho military generals and psychotic drill seargents, the President. That's appropriate, since the best way to undermind a bully is to laugh in their face.
But nobody thought the carnage was a laughing matter. Nobody made quips in the office or classroom about that famous footage of a Viet Cong being shot in the head execution style on a Saigon Street, the blood shooting out of his temple in a gusher as he fell dead.
That's because such things aren't funny.

Humor is a useful tool in the box of the dissenting public. As long as it's directed at the perps, not the victims.

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