Thursday, June 7, 2007

Three Songs for Billy Collins: Update

So here’s what I have after a week. I have a workable chorus for Song 1:

Men can’t see for dreaming
Guess that’s just the rule
I am so beautiful
And you are such a fool
To love me

I have a snarky verse for Song 2:

God made you pretty, so it’s no surprise
A smile from you can bring a man to tears.
There’s something like a promise in your eyes
But not a single thing between your ears

And a possible chorus:

God made you beautiful
The way you smile can break a million hearts
God made you beautiful
To bad He never gave you any smarts.

And for song 3, just a verse:

You are a fool/To think I am a goddess
You are a fool/To picture me with wings
I’m not an angle from above/So please don’t talk to me of love
As far as I can see, it’s just one of those things

And that’s where I stalled, because I think in terms of theatre and performing, so in order to actually write these three songs, I needed to know who’s actually singing them, and I didn’t. And Song 2 has taken the initial idea and turned it into something a lot harder than the premise, which is “You are so beautiful, too bad you are a fool,” not “You are so beautiful, too bad your elevator doesn’t go all the way to the penthouse.”

It was the third song that turned out to be the key (you are a fool to think that I am beautiful). Just saying the words out loud made me think of Rita Hayworth, or rather the Maria Conchita Canseco behind the stage name. Which means the first song is either sung by the actress or one of the roles she plays (Gilda? Elsa Bannister?) and the second by one of the men in her life, which to me means Orson Welles. Which would mean a three-song cycle where a man falls in love with an actress who warns him away from her, because the woman inside the actress knows it isn’t going to last.

That’s what I’m working on now. We’ll see if this makes things any easier for my too-smart-for-my-own-good brain . . .

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