Sunday, December 06, 2009

Van Morrison tells it like it is

I woke up late again this morning. Banjo dog has suffered blow out diarrhea for the past two nights. He wakes up every hour with a low moan that lets me know he needs to get outside and fast. This is in effect from about 1 a.m. until 6 a.m. We come in about 6:30 and finally get some sleep until the hot sun infiltrates at about 10 a.m.

Lucy suffered this same condition a week ago. The vet prescribed endo-sorb tabs and an antibiotic. Banjo's symptoms completely mimic Lucy's making me wonder if this isn't a canine virus.

When I finally came downstairs Andy had the XM satellite radio tuned to his favorite station, the Loft. Dave Marsh was interviewing my all-time favorite musician Van Morrison.

In the car recently I've been listening to Van's old CD "Astral Weeks," which includes the enigmatic tune "Madame George," a song I don't quite understand but that I know involves marijuana, young men growing up, and Madame George. She is a sympathetic character, one to whom, throughout the song, we must "say goodbye to." There is so much "past" involved here, just as the present moment is described in detail.

As the song progresses, Van's lyrics become less intelligible, moving from describing a clear scene to pounding out a feeling, to expressing, in wordless utterances, something profound. "The glove the love the love the love the glove the love the love" That profundity is never quite clear. We grasp it for a moment and then it dissipates. Madame George is handing back a glove but a sincere love is present in that expression.

Nonetheless, the interview is inspired. Marsh engages Van in a way I have never experienced. Van actually respects Dave Marsh (whoah) and opens up to him. I can't find the interview online, and I know I missed the first part of it. So, I hope the Loft plays it again soon or makes it available online.


leftovers said...

Wow! An interview with Van the Man where he wasn't his cantankerous self!!!
Please let me know if you manage to get hold of the whole interview.
Would love to hear it.

David said...

Looks like it was on yesterday...but a rebroadcast Wed at midnight

December 6th - Kick Out The Jams with Dave Marsh on The Loft – An encore of Van Morrison’s visit with Dave. (10 am – Noon ET) THE LOFT/29 XM 50

Kick Out The Jams with Dave Marsh is based at the intersection of music and politics. Dave tells stories, interviews music figures and others, takes calls from listeners, intertwines politics and plays some really cool records. This week it’s time to reach into the archives for a second listen to Van Morrison’s visit with Dave.

Rebroadcast: Wednesday, December 9th @ Midnight ET

Laura McGowan said...

Thanks Dave!

Anonymous said...

Too bad some people can't be banned from using bandwidth.

leftovers said...

I live in Mumbai, India so there's no way I can tune in to the radio station. Is it on youtube?


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Hi Laura,

On behalf of Exile Productions, Exile Publishing, Exile Films and Lion Records, many thanks for plugging Van Morrison and, if you / your readers would like good quality, non-pirated previews from Van's latest album and DVD - "Astral Weeks Live at the Hollywood Bowl" - then footage of “Sweet Thing” from the Hollywood Bowl is available for fans to view and link to (ONLY please – not for embedding) at Up-to-the-minute news on the “Astral Weeks Live” album and film releases and Van’s 2009 shows is, of course, available on and An increasing archive of exclusive film footage of Van Morrison performances is also available for fans and YouTubers on Exile’s official channel at ... .. and keep an eye on these official sources for details of further preview material and on-line promotions.

Thanks again for your plug.