Stairway To Heaven, Or To Atheism? — Guest Post by Ianto Watt

A severe bustle.

What does ‘a bustle in the hedgerow’ mean? I’m referring to a previous post, wherein I said Led Zeppelin’s Jimmy Paige was a liar. Why? Because there isn’t ‘still time to change the road you’re on‘. At least not in the long run, as he qualified it. And therein lies the Lie. Because there is no long run. At least, not as it applies to me. Or you. Sure, there is the Law of Large Numbers, sometimes known as probability or Chance. But that is not what governs us and our lives. Rather, it is the Law of Small Numbers. As in the number one.

Bear with me here. I’m saying that your or my individual fate is not a matter of chance. At least, not in so far as time goes. For as we all (should) know, The Bus can hit you at any time. Any time. So the only time there truly is, is the present time. There is no past, at least a past that can claim us now. If you’re reading this, in the here and now, that’s proof enough.

And likewise, there is no future, at least not one you can guarantee. For yourself, that is. You could die this instant, and the coroner would pronounce the cause, which often times is ‘unknown’. It could be the unseen heart attack. It could be the 4th of July reveler shooting a pistol in the air and the bullet fired a mile away finds its way to you. It could be the stray meteorite. Or an Islamic terrorist who decides to drive The Bus on the sidewalk. It could be anything. And that is the point.

If you think I’m being silly, ask yourself if insurance companies are silly. They don’t think they are, and they manage to stay in business. But it’s not the business of guessing who’s next. Nope, they’re busy calculating when the next ‘who’s next’ will occur. They know the Law of Large Numbers better than anyone. And they know that it doesn’t apply to you or I individually. And truth be told, they don’t care about us, personally. They only care about us in the aggregate.

So what am I leading to? Simply this: you can’t bank on the future. Insurance companies generally can, but you and I can’t. Which is why we buy their product, eh? Because insurance companies get lots of lives to live (and die) upon, whereas you and I have only one. (Note: all faithful Hindus can quit reading at this point).

And so, there is my point about Jimmy, as he skips along towards The Stairway to Heaven. No Jimmy, there isn’t time to still change the road you’re on. Because there is no guaranteed future. There is only now, from a realistic standpoint. That’s all you can bank on.

Now none of this would matter if there was nothing beyond the great beyond, right? We can agree on that? Good. Because Jimmy evidently agrees too, or else what is the point of the lyric? Well, sure, he could have written it just to sell the record, and I’m sure he did, at one level of intent. We all do our job for the pay. But Jimmy evidently had something additional in mind when he wrote that song. Because he isn’t stupid. He’s better educated, in the classical sense, than most people today. And he’s having fun with his knowledge of history while he cuts his wood. And why not enjoy your work if you can? His only problem, as I see it, is one of historical interpretation.

Jimmy has interpreted the story of life as one in which all roads lead to home. And in a certain sense, they do. But that avoids the question of whether or not there are any dangers or roadblocks along a particular way. Things that might keep you from your destination, regardless of what the map may say. As Mick would say, ‘I lay traps for troubadours, who get killed before they reach Bombay‘.

Yes, I know, you think I’m an idiot for thinking that there’s any meaning at all to those words spun by our cultural spin-meisters. And no, I don’t think you need to play a record backwards to find the hidden intent. Why? Because nobody is hiding any intent at all anymore. It’s laid out right in front of us. But we don’t really pay that much attention to the words (or even symbols), do we? Why? Because the tune is so catchy, right? And it is!

And the best tunes are composed by guys who have had some (or a lot) of classical training. Guys who know how to dress it up. Real craftsmen like Jimmy, and Mick. Guys who actually know The Craft. And I can’t forget my favorite, Deep Purple, working Beethoven’s 7th into a cover of ‘We Can Work It Out‘ . True class! And while you can’t always get what you want, if you try, sometimes, you get what you need. So what is it you need?

Well, if you’re an atheist, as a lot of people evidently are, then all you need is more time. Because there’s nothing beyond The Now. So they just need more ‘now’. So who cares what the lyrics say? If it sounds good, enjoy it! If it feels good, do it! That’s the atheist mantra. That’s what Joe Steel believed. And Mao too. And lots of good guys like them. Huh? You don’t want me associating your dis-belief system with guys like them? Why not? Aren’t you open to diversity? Are you saying there’s only one way to be an atheist? That’s awfully discriminatory, isn’t it? Don’t be such a prig, Komrade.

Let’s leave it at that. Let’s go ahead and pretend atheism is all good. And everybody gets what they want. But what if that guy over there wants to eat you? Yeah, that cannibal over there. You know, Jeffrey Dahmer, the atheist cannibal. I’m not kidding. What are you going say to him as he starts nibbling your toes? Are you hoping he converts in time to save your soul-less self? Why is that? Why do you want him to change, and not you? Why can’t you just enjoy it, like him? A little atheistic fellowship pot-luck dinner? Why are you so anti-social?

By the way, Jeffrey did convert. You know why? Because he came to realize that other people had rights that were equal to his. And so, either he had to change, or they had to change. He decided he was wrong. He said he realized all those things he had been taught were wrong. Jeffrey concluded, upon reflecting upon his past, that all those atheists who taught him that that nothing matters were wrong. And the primary means of his ‘education’ were the things he heard, day in and day out, in this atheistic, post-Christian ‘culture’ we live in. Culture. As in music. As in lyrics. Words count, you know. Every one of them.

Anyway, let’s get back to the point, eh? And that is the question of whether or not there is any rational meaning to Jimmy’s lyrics in Stairway to Heaven. Yes, I know, in your mind I’ve already prejudiced the entire case by prefacing it with the word ‘rational’. Well, that’s tough. You atheists can’t have it both ways. Either you believe in some kind of universal law (which requires universal assent), or you don’t. Make up your mind. If there’s no God, there’s no reason to object when Jeffrey starts nibbling on your toes. Or when I use the word ‘rational’. Or when anybody does anything you don’t like. In other words, what cosmic difference does it make that you don’t like something some other atheist did, if there is no cosmic order?

Yes, it’s up to you to prove it, not me. Prove why Joe Stalin was a bad atheist. How can you? Because if there’s no God, there’s no universal definition of what is good, nor bad. Without a God, universally recognized as such, what do those terms really mean? So here we are, back to semantics. The word you hate. But unless you can cite some universal congress of atheists who convened and unanimously voted on what atheism really means (and allows), then you’re really just arguing on behalf of yourself. In which case, you are simply setting yourself up as the real God. Hail Caesar. Hail you. Hail no.

Anyway, let’s get back to Jimmy and his lyrics. Why? Because they are at the heart of this matter. What was he really saying? Is it that hard to parse? No, not at all. Not for anyone who has read something from the past. Something from the French Revolution. Something from the Age of The Enlightenment. And a little something from Genesis. Let’s see how enlightened they were, and still are. Or aren’t.
So here are the lyrics in question:

If there’s a bustle in your hedgerow, don’t be alarmed now,
It’s just a spring clean for the May queen.
Yes, there are two paths you can go by, but in the long run
There’s still time to change the road you’re on.
And it makes me wonder.

It made me wonder too, a long time ago. So then, just what is a bustle, and what is its purpose? Well, in this instance, it is a noun, and not a verb. It refers to an undergirding of a woman’s dress that produced the same look on any woman. Regardless of the actual shape of her body. It’s stated purpose was to keep a weighty train from flattening out by draping it over an extended framework. It was Victorian in origin, and so you can guess that its other purpose was to hide the actual contour of the female figure (which would show if the train were to flatten out from its own weight).

In other words, it was a means of giving all women the same physical appearance while hiding the actual individual feminine form. That is to say, it was a means of achieving equality of form (which most women want in the realm of courtship) while preserving modesty in public dress.

So then, why would we then find this object in a hedge row? And why would that be alarming? Quite simple. If it is in your hedgerow, it means someone is not wearing it! Yes, she’s taken it off, and tossed it out. What’s that mean? It means modesty (and feminine equality of appearance) is out the window. So what else has she taken off? These days, what hasn’t she taken off?

Now let’s look at the hedgerow. What is that all about? Well, what is Paradise? A walled garden, of course. But what is the wall made of? The hedgerow, of course. What? Why a hedgerow? Well, think about it. If you place any credence in the possibility of a naturally perfect Garden of Eden (the first Paradise), there would not be anything in it made by Man. It was already complete. It was a piece of land, with a four-way river that flowed down and out. In other words, there was an elevated point of origin for the spring that fed the four rivers that flowed out of the common spring.

And this same piece of land was walled-in by another natural feature—a hedgerow. Which, by the way, makes for a very effective wall. Just ask the men at D-Day if the hedgerows of Normandy were any sort of hindrance to their advance. Even in their tanks.

Yes, hedgerows are the perfect natural defensive barrier. The hedge tree isn’t known as ‘iron wood’ for nothing. I’ve burned a lot of chains cutting that stuff. It’s brutal. That’s why the pioneers used hedge wood for pence posts. I’ve seen some that are well over a hundred years old, still in use, and are still tough as nails. Perfect for maintaining the integrity of the enclosed garden. Perfect for keeping the peace. Which is what Adam was charged with. ‘To dress it and keep it’. In every sense of the word. Keep it clean, keep it productive, keep it orderly, keep it safe.

So when you find a bustle in your hedgerow, should you be alarmed? I would be. Why? Because it just might mean your wife has gone over to the enemy. You know, that snake. Who, by the way, has the perfect physical shape for penetrating a hedgerow. Because the only point of possible entry is where the hedge tree sprouts from the earth, before it expands with its prickly appendages. And the serpent, being subtle, was able to penetrate the defensive barrier of the Garden. And to convince that silly gal to toss her means of modesty in return for the promise of ‘knowledge‘. That is to say, power.

Now you may protest that she was already naked, and I quite agree. But that doesn’t change a thing, because she didn’t know it. Yes, that sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it? But think about it. How could she not know it? Couldn’t she see? Well of course she could. But you’re looking at it backwards, my atheist friend. You can’t understand things until you understand the functions of the eye. Yes, plural, functions. The first, of course, is to let light in, in order to inform us of the exterior world.

The second purpose, however, has been lost to mankind for the most part. That’s because the second purpose is to let light out. That is, to emit the light of your soul, so that others may see what is in you. And theoretically, the two purposes should be congruent. The outward creation is bathed in light so that we may perceive the goodness of it.

The inward creation is also (or should be) a source of light. It too should illuminate those who perceive it. And they see it in the eyes of other men. Because the eye is the window of the soul. And we all know light can pass both ways through the glass, at the same time. And it was intended to. After all, Scripture tells us, Matthew 6-22:23, ‘The eye is the lamp of the body’. So let’s do a little thought experiment here. Have you ever looked directly at an incandescent light that is on? Haven’t we all? Sure. And when you did, did you see the light, or did you see the actual glass surface of the device? Of course, you saw the light. And the closer you get, the more blinding it is. To the point of obscuring the visibility of the glass.

Now turn off the juice, and what do you see? The naked bulb. The undressed surface of the object, which is no longer bathed in light. The light that formerly obscured the naked surface of the bulb. Now ask yourself this: why did Adam fall for this stupid deal? Didn’t he have any brains? Why did he listen to her? Well, was she actually talking? Did she even need to?

We know she was after knowledge (power). And when she came to him with the apple (with the half-price tag still on it, as that trick always works with girls), what did he see? The apple? Hell no. He saw her. With her lights off. He saw her actual shape. And that was all it took. It’s no secret that most men fall for lust. Adam was simply the first. And now she saw the power she had bought with that word of assent to the snake. And she uses it till this day.

And so, if the Beautiful Lady is the New Eve, and she is universally known as the May Queen, then it should follow that Eve was the first May Queen. And now we’re back to our friend Jimmy and his lyrics. Read them again. Now tell me that they mean something other than the French Revolution, and the Original Revolution. And that ‘enlightened’ souls (who deny they have immortal souls) don’t see these two events as being the true liberation of man. And more importantly, to feminists everywhere, the liberation of womankind. Go ahead, tell me.

So that bustle in the hedgerow is nothing to be alarmed at? After all, it’s just a spring clean for the May Queen, as she throws out all those outmoded things that are just cluttering up the place. Things like modesty and humility. Things that have no place in her life anymore. She’s after bigger things, like a career. And power. And with that power, she can buy anything she wants, With just a word she can get what she came for. So, we’re back to that Word again, eh? What is that word? No, not that one. Jimmy doesn’t like the original Word. So he’s written his own.

But Jimmy’s right about one thing. There are two paths you can go by. But they lead to different destinations. But you’ve got to decide, now, where you want to go. Because there’s not still (future) time to change the road you’re on. There is only now. There isn’t any more time. And look, here comes your ride. The Bus. But there’s a madman at the wheel, and he’s driving on the sidewalk again. And he’s coming right at you. Time’s up, Jimmy. Time to go, Bro. Lights out. Tell Uncle Joe and Mao ‘hi’ for me, OK? Thanks. And good luck. You’re gonna need it.

16 Comments

  1. …ummm…sorry I don’t mean to be pedantic but I’m pretty sure Robert Plant wrote the lyrics to Stairway, JP wrote the music. I’m no Zep expert so any who are nearby feel free to correct me. Still maybe this is becoming a classic rock blog…that would be way cool!

  2. And in the same apologetic spirit exhibited by Plantagenet, I humbly suggest the meaning of “bustle” as: “excited activity and movement”. Which, by the way, fits with the spring cleaning metaphor.

    Nice story, though.

  3. Well I did not expect to begin my Saturday delving into the process of creating English prog and folk but it is useful just the same to have these facts at ones fingertips. Page and Plant had just returned to the studio from a vacation in rural Wales. Plant says they had been taking in the culture and rhythms of the Welsh countryside which happened to correspond to what he had been reading at the time which was histories of the practice of magic in Celtic societies. Wales is, of course, about as Celtic as it gets, and Plant says this worked its way into the song by osmosis. He admits that many of the lyrics are open to interpretation, even he changes his mind about every specific meaning, but the gist of the song is about exactly what it seems to be about, a lady who lives the way she wants and selfishly aquires things only to find it a hollow enterprise.
    So there we are. The background to the song would appear to be Pagan rather than Judeo-Christian. Nevertheless much of what Mr Watt wrote could certainly be a viable interpretation given the influence of Christanity on Celtic culture, or for that matter Mr Plant.
    Man the things one picks up along life’s highway…oh great now I’ve got Tom Cochranes song in my head.

  4. there isn’t time to still change the road you’re on. Because there is no guaranteed future

    If there’s no time to change then we’re all doomed then this post is just complaining.

    If, however, you’re saying no path is completely predictable, so what? Are you saying just because there’s an apparent cliff ahead, you really can’t say for sure so why try to avoid it?

    Sheesh!

  5. Yeh I agree Dav, that line from Ianto didn’t make much sense when I read it.

    But overall, interesting post Ianto Watt. I’ll talk to you soon.

  6. DAV and DG-

    Well, isn’t he talking about future time? Wasn’t that the whole point? That now is the only time you’ve got in order to change?

  7. Ianto Watt errs twice. First, Watt gives too much credit to Robert Plant, the lyricist of the song Stairway to Heaven. Plant never was clever enough to write anything of deep meaning for mankind. Second, Watt reads much too much meaning into the song. It is not there.

    Occam’s razor helps us. The song seems to be about Led Zeppelin and a would-be groupie, a young one, which was common for Led Zeppelin. It is not much deeper than that.

    Led Zeppelin loved the United States and even more so Los Angeles. And hack guitarist Jimmy Page had a penchant for underage girls (e.g., Lori Maddox).

    A dissection of the song reveals the song is merely about the band in its time.

    Lyric: “There’s a feeling I get when I look to the west; and my spirit is crying for leaving.”
    Meaning: Plant is yearning to return to Los Angeles.

    Lyric: “There’s a lady that’s sure all that glitters is gold; and she’s buying a stairway to heaven.”
    Meaning: There is a would-be groupie who is enamored by rock stars.

    Lyric: “When she gets there she knows, if the stores are all closed, with a word she can get what she came for.”
    Meaning: If the would-be groupie says yes to sex with the band or staff, she will get drugs.

    Lyric: “If there’s a bustle in your hedgerow, don’t be alarmed now. It’s just a spring clean for the May queen.”
    Meaning: Likely, hedgerow is her vulva. A bustle could be a few of the band or staff groping the would-be groupie.

    Lyric: “Yes, there are two paths you can go by, but in the long run, there’s still time to change the road you’re on.”
    Meaning: Plant is lecturing the would-be groupie to give up the star chasing lifestyle.

    Lyrics: “In my thoughts I have seen rings of smoke through the trees, when the voices of those who standing looking.”
    Meaning: Trees are the bodies in 20,000 seat arenas. Rings of smoke is cigarette smoke common at concerts in the early 1970s. The those who stand looking is more reference to concert goers.

    Lyrics: “And it’s whispered that soon if we all call the tune well then the piper will lead us to reason. And a new day will dawn for those who stand long; and the forests will echo with laughter.”
    Meaning: Though speculative but the piper could be Peter Grant. That might have been a band nickname for him. Again, the forests are concert crowds.

    The song is so bad that going more into revealing the stupidity of the lyrics would fail to bear much fruit.

    Stairway to Heaven is a crap song. The inveterate plagiarist Jimmy Page wrote the dull music and often lyrical plagiarist Robert Plant penned the droll lyrics.

    Prog rock will be nothing but pretentious wankery foisted on mankind by Brits after the Beach Boys Pet Sounds poisoned The Beatles to produce Sgt. Peppers.

  8. @Joe
    Now I’m sorry but I just cannot let most of that pass. Hack guitarist!!! I have no particular devotion to Led Zep but I do fiddle about with guitars from time to time and we should all be so lucky to be such hacks! You are a cad sir! As for the whole groupie L.A. thing I suppose it’s as likely to have had some influence. Though Plant was married with 3 kids at the time, and very heavily into the whole folk scene in England with its interest in Celtic mythology. He moved to Wales the year after Stairway was released. I admit much of the scene was a bit of a hangover from the hippie movement, but the adherence to a certain rural idle was serious, and the spirituality, though perhaps misplaced, was grounded in rural British tradition. See Fairport Convention, Steeleye Span, and Jethro Tull.
    However we drift. Mr Watt seems to be saying a universe without God is pointless, and now is the time to do something about ones beliefs. Good points. However I think Robert Plant probably agrees with him.
    So a philosophy blog AND a classic rock blog. Cool!

  9. Oh, by the way, I quite agree that many of Zeps lyrics are trite, or silly, or self important, but they hit the sweet spot now and again. Plant could be quite moving too. “All My Love” from their final album was written for his son who died at 5. It is written from the p.o.v of the fates that weave the skein of human history.

  10. First, Ianto Watt displays rambling, weak writing. His writing is much like a typical Jimmy Page guitar solo during a live performance.

    Worse, Watt did not bother to research anything about Led Zeppelin. Had he done so, he would have discovered the story about Plant penning the lyrics is practically one go within minutes. There is even a this-decade BBC video interview with Page telling the story. The video is available on YouTube.

    Second, marriage doesn’t equate to fidelity. So it matters not if Plant was married. All the same, Plant was witness to the sexual shenanigans of the other band members.

    People write about what they know. Plant was 22 at the time and until joining Led Zeppelin two years earlier, a country bumpkin nerd who was well known as a pest who incessantly bothered Steve Marriott.

    Third, if you believe Page was a great guitarist and not a hack, go watch Page struggle song after song on YouTube. Search on Knebworth Led Zeppelin.

    As a vocalist, Plant sounded like an ally cat in heat.

    The one guy with talent in the band, John Paul Jones, is the guy both Plant and Page consistently ostracized after the death of Bonham. And that should make you wonder.

    Dorky Led Zeppelin nerds will never stop apologizing for them, for Page’s weak, tasteless playing and their plagiarism.

    And while you can call me a cad, at least, it is far better than being retarded.

    Good luck!

  11. I have read many of Mr Watts rants here. They provide light entertainment. He seems to have a special conspiracy theorists affection for Russia and the link between Putin and the Orthodox Church. He can be a bit vague. Well just as the art of the quote is knowing when to stop, the art of the conspiracy theorist is keeping it suitably murky all the better to take credit if some bit actually happens. I cannot tell how much of his Russian nonsense actually is nonsense, but what little faith I had in his ability to do even basic research took a hit here. A quick look at the hundreds of histories of Zep could have saved him looking like an arse.
    Robert Plants voice is no better or worse than many who drift up into falsetto,heck start with Geddy Lee. I still think he’s a hippie and relatively harmless.
    Now Jimmy Page. I am not a fan of Zep but I have no hate on for them. Your comments do not read like a musicians, they barely read as a critics. Page was one of the most sought after session players in London, including The Kinks and Stones amongst hundreds of others. Is it your contention that these bands, and their management, and their record companies, and lawyers, accountants etc…all didn’t know a hack when they saw one? Is this where you want to plant your flag?
    As for Zep live I never cared much for them. Jimmy Page was a drug addict, and he still managed to lay down some interesting tracks on record. The guitar tracks on Immigrants Song, for instance, is a thing of wonder. His problems are to be pitied.
    As for plagiarism any bluesman would simply laugh.
    I beg your pardon for “cad” it was intended as a joke. As for “Retarded” well…

  12. And therein lies the Lie. Because there is no long run. …

    Or as John Maynard Keynes famously said: “In the long run, we’ll all be dead!” Didn’t the Eagles have a song titled “In the Long Run”?

  13. Ianto,

    In general atheists and dictionaries alike define an atheist, unambiguously and uncontroversially, as someone who does not believe in god. Atheism is not a belief system or a quasi religion. It is therefore irrational to regard the values, conduct or opinions of one atheist as being characteristic of all others. Some atheists have a passionate, blind faith in the non-existence of god that seems equal and opposite to a religionist’s passionate, blind faith in the existence of god. Others, such as I, dispassionately place your Christian God in the same fictional continuum as Odin, Quetzalcoatl, and Q from Star Trek.

    “Well, if you’re an atheist, as a lot of people evidently are, then all you need is more time. Because there’s nothing beyond The Now. So they just need more ‘now’. So who cares what the lyrics say? If it sounds good, enjoy it! If it feels good, do it! That’s the atheist mantra. ”

    There is no “atheist mantra” beyond “I don’t believe in god”. You cannot go around arbitrarily associating things with atheism and expect to be taken seriously.

    “That’s what Joe Steel believed. And Mao too. And lots of good guys like them. Huh? You don’t want me associating your dis-belief system with guys like them? Why not?”

    Your intent, in associating evil atheists with atheism, is to insinuate that evil atheists are evil because they are atheists, is it not? Why wouldn’t an atheist find that objectionable?

    “Aren’t you open to diversity? Are you saying there’s only one way to be an atheist? That’s awfully discriminatory, isn’t it? Don’t be such a prig, Komrade.”

    The question of openness to diversity, like your “atheist mantra”, has no connection with atheism.

    Let’s leave it at that. Let’s go ahead and pretend atheism is all good. And everybody gets what they want.
    This makes as much sense to me as, “Let’s go ahead and pretend that disbelief in the existence of unicorns is all good. And everybody is President of France.”

    But what if that guy over there wants to eat you?Yeah, that cannibal over there. You know, Jeffrey Dahmer, the atheist cannibal. I’m not kidding. What are you going say to him as he starts nibbling your toes? Are you hoping he converts in time to save your soul-less self? Why is that? Why do you want him to change, and not you? Why can’t you just enjoy it, like him? A little atheistic fellowship pot-luck dinner? Why are you so anti-social?
    You’re not kidding? Perhaps you have some rational reason for asking these seemingly bizarre questions, but if you do then it is lost on me. Taken as a whole, I am sorry to say, they seem like a nothing more than an incoherent expression of malevolence.

  14. @Plantagenet

    You (stupidly): “Your comments do not read like a musicians, they barely read as a critics.”

    Your comments come across as the ramblings of a dimwit.

    The article discusses the lyrical content, which I addressed.

    You (stupidly): “The guitar tracks on Immigrants Song, for instance, is a thing of wonder.”

    Dude, dummy, it’s literally an F# note bouncing to the octave and then open A followed by a E5, back to the open A and then the F# bounce. The other bit is a chromatic movement of A5, B5, C5.

    Better luck next time, dummy retard.

  15. Plantagenet I couldn’t have said it better myself.

    Ominous N, I do agree about atheists and atheism and the unchristian depiction of others. So much politics masquerading as faith. That’s from a confirmed Christian who today uses a capital C because she’s so careful.

    As to the nerd who thinks he can interpret lyrics to mean evil things, well I thought that went out with pipe-liner jeans and ‘Relax’ T-shirts. Some of us don’t follow fashion and never have.

    The dirty interpretation of the hedgerow are just references to precisely that. As likely to be beaters who force pheasants out for wannabe shooters to boast they’re a good shot. Or RAT’s or foxes a rustling that might bother the sheep or the poultry.. There’s a hundred possibilities.

    I wonder what He Is Risen and Happy Muff are supposed to mean? Perhaps somebody could look that up in the urban dictionary. So if Briggs were a lyricist heaven help os he’d be well and truly in the dog house.

    The Beatles’ john and Paul used to write any old thing in the lyric at one point to get a ‘rise’ out of media and create speculation. Just like Trump does today. Some of the writing is deliberate and has meaning much is not intended any sense let alone depth. Don’t let that get in the way of a good old whinge.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6zHTuPhkWjo

    listen all the way through and see if you become an atheist as a result or if you still believe in God.

    Briggs. THAT sound is fabulous and knocks socks off your mad hair man Nugent.
    Anyway that is the only version to listen to. Not all the time of course.

    John B()
    Eagles are fabulous too!
    The last resort is my favourite and just liking the song doesn’t mean you have to love the ’message’. Most of the time it’s the combinations of sounds mixed which make the song a bestseller. Nothing more. Once the lyrics become too forefront the songs and this goes for most songs ever written, become unlistenable to. Strangely though I do like the lyrics in the Eagle’s song because I’m not judging it’s conclusions, it’s an honest self expression of the writer and there’s nothing different in that than this comment or any other comment that appears on this site every day.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p4zR9r9olOg
    “The old world shadows hang heavy in the air”
    for a reason. The Old world rules. That track would and has rocked me to sleep when It was most needed. Otherwise it’s this:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_7P2I804nw8

  16. Joe;
    Your interpretation of the lyrics is rather like Mr Watts you read in those things you wish to be there. While the idea of it being nothing more than a thinly veiled reference to a groupie is plausible, even shrewd the evidence suggests otherwise. Plant took a fairly ordinary moral lesson and added a lot of the Celtic mysticism and trendy English folk blarney surrounding Tolkien etc…to suit the music. There is no evidence this is some attempt to castigate a loose woman in any particular sense. Plant is on record, many times, apologizing for the poorly thought through, and amatuerish use of mythology. He could have saved himself a lot of grief by just saying ” oh it’s a song about a groupie”. Why all the self chastisement. Occams Razor indeed.
    As for Immigrants Song the wonder is that Page has essentially taken a folk songs structure put it to speed, made it heavy and created something which continues to be listened to long after his source is forgotten. Derivative, plagiarism, theft, maybe but bloody cunning. Let’s not forget AC/DC has made a fortune with the same simple stupid 4 chords every pub band has been using for 60 years. If it’s so simple why isn’t everyone doing it…why aren’t you doing it?
    And don’t chuck guitar tabs and lessons at me like I’m a halfwit. The simplicity is the point ( and it’s an open E not a power chord).
    I really don’t give a rats patoot about the last word but you are clearly a junkie so it’s all yours.

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