The Craftsman Café – 12 Songs

Enjoy this guest post that I published over on Craftsman Cafe in late 2014 … the seminal days of Craftsman Media.
Thanks, Jim Connell!
“Show Don’t Tell” – Rush
Drip … drip … boom!
Percussion and an aura of suspense trickle then, combine and combust into one of my favorite mainstream rock tracks.
“Show Don’t Tell” is both a musical and lyrical statement.
As a percussionist, I have followed Neil Peart since my first days behind a drum kit. As we listeners and performers evolve, his words and rhythms are law.
Yes, there are “YYZ” and “Tom Sawyer” yet, I most enjoy playing this song. Emotion always pours out of me and into the instrument. Especially when playing along with one of the best in the world. The riffs, the funk, the syncopation all form and fuel a perfect catharsis: physical, mental, spiritual … emotional.
It’s communication. It’s cutting through noise.
Being a Junior in High School when this track was released (1989), this song was part of my coming of age.
“How many times do you hear it? It goes on all day long. Everyone knows everything. No one’s ever wrong.”
“Until later …”
“Who can you believe? It’s hard to play it safe. But apart from a few good friends. We don’t take anything on faith.”
“Until later …”
These aforementioned words represent mental noise. What teenager does not have a bit of cognitive dissonance?
“Show, Don’t Tell.”
“Show me, don’t tell me.”
“You’ve figured out the score.”
“Show me, don’t tell me.”
“I’ve heard it all before”
“Show me, don’t tell me.”
“I don’t care what you say.”
“Show me, don’t tell me.”
These words represent a resolution to being exploited. Don’t we all aspire to that kind of freedom?
Very fitting for an album, titled “Presto”, whose cover displays a rabbit in a magician’s hat … levitating atop a hill … above and beyond several other rabbits.
“You can twist perceptions. Reality won’t budge.”
“You can raise objections. I will be the judge.”
“And the jury …”
“I’ll give it due reflection. Watching from the fence.”
“Give the jury direction. Based on the evidence.”
“I, the jury …”
How about that for evolving out of the frustration of dependence? Magical, is it not?
“Let’s try to keep it short”.
“I’ve heard it all before.”
“Enough of your demands.”
“Let’s see exhibit A.”
In today’s day of social media, where anything can be everywhere … immediately … these phrases cannot ring more true.
To quote Peart, himself – “Where words fail, music speaks.”
Part of effective communication is cutting through noise. To really engage an audience is to convey what matters to you. If you don’t engage … if you can’t communicate … who’s the fool?
Until later …”

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