where the writers are
Epic Songwriting

I hardly post on the subject of music or songwriting, but after reading an article on the Beach Boys' new album (the band's 50th anniversary album and tour - - I know - - they're old as dirt, and I am too, almost, and so will you be one day, smugly smiling young folks), I dragged out Brian Wilson's "Smile" album and gave it a listen as I was running a few errands. Fortunately the CD came with a lyrics booklet (you can access the lyrics here), and I spent a half hour later reading them. I'd urge you to do the same, particularly if you're a writer - doubly so if you're in the throes of writer's block.

Images
image via morethings.com

Wilson and VanDyke Parks wrote these pieces - a concept album - something you don't see often anymore, but perhaps as ambitious a project as the Beatles' "Sgt. Pepper" album of ages ago. 

The lyrical context begins on the U.S.'s east coast and ends on the west coast, but there's much more to it than that. The project chronicles much of the U.S.'s development, including both good and bad of our nation's vision of Manifest Destiny. It's actually a pretty radical project, both creatively and via subject matter, but it's softened quite a lot by Wilson's awe inspiring musicianship.

Anyway, just thought I'd share.