Sunday, March 4, 2018
Turn the Burner Down
Song 397: This week’s playlist track is Melting Pot by John Mellencamp, who also wrote the song. You can find a YouTube video of it by clicking on the title. I had gotten Rain on the Scarecrow as a gift a few years earlier, but it was the 1991 Mellencamp LP Whenever We Wanted that really got my attention. I remember the NYC buses plastered with ads for it, and hearing plenty of good stuff from it on the radio, so I soon had my own personal copy as a regular spinner on my turntable. Two other favorites from it already made this list - Crazy Ones (Song 285) and Get a Leg Up (Song 111) - so it surprised me to read today that John, while quite pleased with the album at release time, later lowered his own opinion of it. Personally, I still like the record, and the lyrics on this tune sound even more meaningful to me now than they did 2 decades ago. Back then I understood the basic reference to the U.S. working class, and how The hawks live upstairs and they use Money, sex and power to gnaw at your brain to Keep you bleeding, begging and snotty if you make your home in that Melting Pot, but this seems more true now than ever. Sadly, it's understandable why you might feel the need to Get yourself a weapon after being Beat up and lied to For your whole life but perhaps it might be a good time to lower the heat on the Melting Pot instead, and lift the working class up rather than continuing to make things worse, which a group of selfish super-rich types wants to continue to do. On a side note, I will admit that I didn't plan this interesting bit of synchronicity where last week's cut has a 2-word title PM and this week's one has a 2-word title MP, or the fact that I featured a CCR track the week before my previous Mellencamp post, just as I did this time around. Stuff happens, doesn't it!