Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Songwriting: Tramp The Dirt Down

Elvis Costello: Tramp The Dirt Down


Various sources of inspiration for songwriting, volume III of at least IV

Politics & War: As I've been thinking about different things that inspire songwriters this week, I have realized how often it is the case that the inspiration is a passionate feeling: love, hate, pain, joy, etc.

Much of the greatest rock music ever written has been written by people who were passionate about politics and war.  And when I think of the most passionate songs along those lines I think of Masters of War by Bob Dylan and Tramp the Dirt Down by Elvis Costello.

[Note: If you examine the side-board of this blog you'll see that Dylan and Costello are the two most blogged-about artists here at SMM. In my opinion this is exactly as it should be and I'm more than happy to add one more to the Elvis column.]

This song is as passionate as they come. It is about Costello's disgust with Margret Thatcher and his determination to live long enough to tramp the dirt down on her grave when she finally dies (a remarkably similar sentiment to that of Masters Of War - I'm just realizing as I type). This is, without question, one of his best songs, and that's about all I have to say about it.


Anonymous said...

Elvis Costello is ok, but he don't know crap about things outside of music. We should be so lucky to have more Marg. Thatchers leading today.

Anonymous said...

It's crazy you think that. She ruined so many lives, destroyed people's livelihoods, communities, British industries, she was only ever interested in looking after her own, the middle and upper classes.
Ask anyone from a working class background from any part of the country and they will tell you the truth.