Café Mouffe: Talking Heads

Comments   6   Date Arrow  September 5, 2023 at 3:00pm   User  by Mark Willis

Once in a lifetime was something of an anthem for me at a difficult time twenty years ago. In the space of several months, I moved out of the 1820 water mill by the river where I’d lived for a decade; my marriage ended; and my father died. In one cataclysmic swoop, it seemed, I became a fatherless child and a single father. The reassurance of David Byrne’s lyrics set a tone that steered me in a new direction:

Letting the days go by/let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by/water flowing underground
Into the blue again/in the silent water
Under the rocks and stones/there is water underground.

Alex brought it all back to me last week when he wrote about finding a continuity in life that dissolves the perceived boundaries before and after catastrophe: “So now I do the things that come to hand and with that unutterable joy wells up. A spring of living water.” Then he sent me his favorite Talking Heads clip, Cross-eyed and Painless:

Encore: There is only one place for that “water falling down” to go… Take Me To The River. Hearing the Heads cover always leads me back upstream to the source by Al Green.

Café Mouffe strives to return to its regular Friday schedule this week.  Please drop by for a listen and a chat. Sometimes the embedded videos don’t work here due to bandwidth constraints, but you’ll always find links to video sources in the notes. Try them. If you’re curious about the Mouffe, here’s the original idea behind it’s creation.

Tagged   1980s · Café Mouffe · memoir


  • #1.   alex 09.05.2023

    I happened to be there, this afternoon, and indeed, I had the Talking Heads playing on my iPod, but it was a rather solitary business.

  • #2.   a blind flaneur » Where the Mouffe Begins: Delmas 09.05.2023

    [...] dropped by Café Mouffe tonight with this photo of the Mouffe’s inspiration, Café Delmas on Place de la [...]

  • #3.   Mark Willis 09.05.2023

    I just went there, too, and brought a gaze home with me. Many thanks!

  • #4.   a blind flaneur » If Jimi Juiced It, A Charred Guitar Isn’t Toast 09.06.2023

    [...] rocking out with Talking Heads and Bob Seeger at the Mouffe, I should note for the record that a guitar set ablaze by Jimi Hendrix [...]

  • #5.   joostburger 09.09.2023

    The Talking Heads sat me on to a quest on Loads of eighties stuff triggered a lot of memories.

    The reflection on my own development, and how to deal with the development of my children is one of the most fascinating things of being a parent. The birth of F. made me think about being a child again, with strong memories of my first encounter with the phenomenon of skateboarding somewhere in the south of france..

    Thissong by the knife from 2006 (live, was my favorite for a long time, and for one reason or the other I stumbled upon it on Youtube..

    I was speechless when I saw that my memories where played back in the first part of the clip..

  • #6.   Mark Willis 09.10.2023

    Thanks, Joost, and congratulations again on F.’s birth.

    Music has certainly been taking me back into similar memories. Music and painting the house (two inextricable processes) with my son. I painted the same house with my father in 1976. I love the fluidity of memories shape-shifting through the roles of fathers and sons. There is no end to that wonder of parenting.

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