Monday, April 28, 2008

Gatsby - Chapter 8 - Desserts, just or otherwise

What a desolate start to a chapter - and an even more desolate ending.

The musical theme for the chapter is Beale Street Blues by W. C. Handy (This is about a 3 minute recording from 1927. Jazz pianist Thomas "Fats" Waller plays for about 2 minutes on the pipe organ, and Alberta Hunter starts singing just after the 2 minute mark. I needed a small update to my Real Player before I could listen to this clip. You can hear a 1943 version with Jack Teagarden and the Paul Whiteman Orchestra *here.*)

I've seen the lights of gay Broadway,
Old Market Street down by the Frisco Bay,
I've strolled the Prado, I've gambled on the Bourse;
The seven wonders of the world I've seen,
And many are the places I have been,
Take my advice, folks, and see Beale Street first!

You'll see pretty browns in beautiful gowns,
You'll see tailor-mades and hand-me-downs,
You'll meet honest men, and pick-pockets skilled,
You'll find that business never ceases 'til somebody gets killed!

If Beale Street could talk, if Beale Street could talk,
Married men would have to take their beds and walk,
Except one or two who never drink booze,
And the blind man on the corner singing "Beale Street Blues!"

I'd rather be there than any place I know,
I'd rather be there than any place I know,
It's gonna take a sergeant for to make me go!

I'm goin' to the river, maybe by and by,
Yes, I'm goin' to the river, maybe by and by,
Because the river's wet, and Beale Street's done gone dry

I think you can safely say that Gatsby's infatuation with Daisy has definitely gone dry.

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