(faustian bargain @ June 12 2005,21:29)
Originally Posted by Horace,June 12 2005,04:29
Esquire: I agree in toto. Â Don't foget too, to credit Ice with a quality that rivals Chuck D., that of enjambment. Â Very few lyrics in pop music contain such a quality. Â My only criticism of your post is that you didn't cite the whole song.
who said anything about "Toto"?
I'm afraid I did. Â Do you care to expound upon their genius?
Horace, Since you asked, this is for you. Bob Dylan's lyrics are often held up as pieces of poetry. But, Toto's lyrics are just as literate and deep as anything as Dylan put out. Here's my interpretation of Toto's 'Rain in Africa': You have a couple who've separated. Their relationship had reached the two year mark, where the woman starts questioning where the relationship is headed and starts broadly hinting about marriage. The guy couldn't handle it, and just wanted things to be the same. So, he runs off to Africa to discover himself, to find out what he really wants. "I hear the drums echoing tonight But she hears only whispers of some quiet conversation She's coming in 12:30 flight The moonlit wings reflect the stars that guide me towards salvation" The girlfriend is coming to Africa on a long, overseas flight to lay down the ultimatium: either Africa or her. Drums symbolize conflict, as well as the guy's beating heart. This is juxtaposed to the woman in the plane: a sterile environment with hundreds of strangers, few speaking to one another, and only in quiet conversation. "I stopped an old man along the way Hoping to find some long forgotten words or ancient melodies He turned to me as if to say, hurry boy, it's waiting there for you" This Old Man is a personification of Africa and the untamed wildness it represents. Before he meets his girlfriend, he's taking a time out and asking himself if he's discovered everything he could. And, Africa, is telling him he hasn't even scratched the surface. Its not too late to turn back. If he did, he could finally find the wisdom he's been looking for in Africa. "Chorus: It's gonna take a lot to drag me away from you There's nothing that a hundred men or more could ever do I bless the rains down in africa Gonna take some time to do the things we never had" The young man's answer is that nothing will stop him from meeting his girlfriend again. The rain symbolizes cleansing and rebirth. He's realized how much he's missed her now when she was gone. He's become a new man, ready to make the commitment and sacrifices that he was not willing to do earlier in the relationship. "The wild dogs cry out in the night As they grow restless longing for some solitary company I know that I must do what's right Sure as kilimanjaro rises like olympus above the serengeti I seek to cure what's deep inside, frightened of this thing that I've become" The wild dogs symbolize him, away from the civilizing influence of a woman. In Africa, he finally he had the freedom he thought he always wanted. But, he only found loneliness and misery. He's scared that this is his future and life. "Chorus (instrumental break) Hurry boy, she's waiting there for you" Notice, that 'it, Africa, has now changed to she, the woman. She's at the airport, and he's rushing to meet her. "It's gonna take a lot to drag me away from you There's nothing that a hundred men or more could ever do I bless the rains down in africa, I bless the rains down in africa I bless the rains down in africa, I bless the rains down in africa I bless the rains down in africa Gonna take some time to do the things we never had" Again, this is just reinforcing the earlier themes of the song. Once he was gone from her, he finally realized how much he missed her. Now, nothing will ever keep them apart and he's going to make all the sacrifices he was never willing to do before. Or, this song is just about a guy who comes to Africa, gets bitten by some wild dogs, and now has become a were-man. And, only the love of his sweetheart can save him from being a were-man.