Day 10 – A Song that Makes You Fall Asleep: "Astral Weeks"

“Astral Weeks” – Van Morrison

Van is going to mellow you oUt

“If I ventured in the slipstream / between the viaducts of your dream …” Van Morrison’s “Astral Weeks” invokes sleep from its very first lyric, and the very first time I heard those words I was on the verge of sleep, listening to a cassette copy of the record on my trusty Walkman. Just a teenager in the dark, being transported, “in another time / in another place / in another face,” I don’t remember whether I actually fell asleep during the song, but I could have; I’m almost falling asleep right now, listening to it as I write: it has that kind of meditative quality — intense but somehow soothing. It’s not Muzak, by any stretch: unlike “elevator music,” it’s various components — the abstract lyrics, Van’s voice, the playful bass, wind and strings — will engage your mind and your consciousness. But it will take you to a place that prepares you, if not for sleep, then for accepting an open flow of thoughts and ideas … thus, the perfect album opener for a record like Astral Weeks. And the perfect preparation for dreaming, if you are heading that way.


About russellwriter

Rob Russell is a dad, husband, writer, musician, educator, comic book reader, bad solderer, pop culture junky, trivia buff and student of everything cool and uncool. His favorite records are Bob Dylan's Blonde on Blonde and, currently, The Best of Bobbie Gentry: The Capitol Years. His favorite comic books are Kurt Busiek's Astro City and Neil Gaiman's Sandman. His favorite literary novels are Gabrial Garcia Marquez's 100 Years of Solitude and William Faulkner's As I Lay Dying. His favorite genre novels are John Scalzi's Red Shirts, M.R. Carrey's The Girl with All the Gifts, and Dan Simmons' Drood. His favorite movie is Goodfellas. His favorite hobby, besides everything, is writing about himself and his favorite things in the third person.

Posted on April 21, 2011, in 30 Songs, Pop Culture and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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