Burning Questions and the Balm That Soothes  

Posted by Heidi in ,

Polymer clay doll I made (from a mold) when I was in my polymer clay doll obsession mode.

There was a comment made on one of my posts recently, something that implied that I was both beautiful and creative. Assuming this is true (the part about me being beautiful and creative, not the fact that someone said it on my blog) (and I am) (assuming), and assuming I did not pay her to say that, even though she is my cousin and can be bribed (I didn't and she wasn't) then I can somewhat safely go on to say that this beauty and creativity does not come without a price for there is a flip side and it is madness. Madness, I say!

Since today has been just about the most obsessive day of my life (couldn't have anything to do with yesterday's post, could it?) I feel it warrants a closer examination, something a little more specific. Because, today, I heard a new song on the radio, one I had never before heard and I am Seriously So Obsessed. Observe.


I hear this song has been out for a few month's now. I don't know where I have been. Who knows, I could have heard it but my capacity for obsession was at low tide then. Sadly, that is not the case today. I have listened to this song dozens of times today already and I can't see myself ever getting tired of it (too bad about those swear words, though).

The last time I was obsessed with a song was when Hallelujah was sung on American Idol. Now, I am not an Idol watcher. We don't even get the appropriate channel at our house. I don't even know which is the appropriate channel. However, we heard all about David Archeluta and we had to find out why the buzz. So, we started watching his American Idol segments on Youtube.

Ah, Youtube! The Cultural Encyclopedia of the day. What would we do without you?

Anywho, just to get an idea of what kind of competition little David was up against, I decided to check out the, er, competition. That was when I heard "Hallelujah" (can't remember who sung it but it was the guy with the dreadlocks who crooned it then got kicked off forthwith).

I have seen Shrek. Who hasn't? Who hasn't heard Hallelujah in the course of watching Shrek? My point exactly! I had heard it, I had loved it, but I did not become obsessed with it. The time was not right. However, I was now Seriously So Obsessed.

I spent the next 3 days researching everything about the song. Studying the lyrics, the melody, the cadence. I had to know, had to know, what was meant by certain phrases, what was in the writer's mind, and who the heck was he?

The internet is a grand thing. I found my answers, each and every one though not without time and effort. It was like cracking a nut. I hope you appreciate that you are getting these answers for free.

All You (Never) wanted to know about the song Hallelujah

I learned who wrote the song (Leonard Cohen), what was in his mind (he wanted to write a song about all the different kinds of Hallelujahs there are--and there are many. Apparently.) Why are there different words and verses in each version and how many verses are there? (15 verses but most versions use a combination of different ones) Who made the song famous? (John Cale) Which is the preferred version ? (Jeff Buckley) Who sang it in Shrek? (Rufus Wainwright) So what happened to Jeff Buckley? (he died, tragically, swimming in a river, but his real name is Scotty which got me right in the heart for reasons I am not at liberty to disclose but which not only increased my obsession but also hooked my teenage daughter) So why does this song make me feel like a teenager who has just read Twilight for the first time and starts looking around for a guy upon whom she can successfully plant a kiss? (Jeff Buckley decided to make his version about just one kind of hallelujah and it's not the kind you hear at church. It used to be on my blog playlist but I had to take it off--it was too distracting). What else does Rufus Wainwright sing? (as it turns out, my favorite version of the Beatle song Across the Universe, my favorite-song-I-never-knew-was-by-the-Beatles) (see playlist).

For the Jeff Buckley version of Hallelujah click below.


The first verse goes "I hear there was a secret chord that David wrote and it pleased the Lord . . . .it goes like this, the 4th, the 5th, the minor fall, the major lift."

Most of all, I had to know, HAD to KNOW, if the chords that were played with those words truly were "a 4th, a 5th, a minor fall, a major lift". (Yes. Truly.) Apparently it is a commonly used combo in very well loved pop songs. It is the secret chord which is secretly used to secretly hook us in a pleasing (but secret) way. All I can say is, subliminal movie popcorn commercials, move over!

I wonder if its in the Jason Mraz song . . .

This entry was posted on Saturday, August 30, 2008 at Saturday, August 30, 2008 and is filed under , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .

6 wise, witty and wonderful comments

Good Evening Heidi,
Did you know that Hallelujah meant Praise Jehovah or Jah?
I'm enjoying your web site.
Have a blessed day.
Miss Lila in Atlanta

August 30, 2008 at 9:20 PM

Yes, well, that's kind of why it seems strange that there can be so many different kinds of "hallelujah", but that was just one man's opinion. :D

August 30, 2008 at 9:53 PM

Love the (polymer clay) doll -
have you done any more?

August 31, 2008 at 5:58 PM

Hmmm, is this one of those "Pass the milk" moments? If you don't know what I mean, ask Barb. If she doesn't remember, ask Lynn.

August 31, 2008 at 6:01 PM


August 31, 2008 at 7:00 PM

You don't seriously like my dolly and want to see more? You can't seriously be asking that when I made one and gave it to your wife for Christmas last year? Maybe you forgot. Probably not one of those things that stuck in your memory. I can't think why not. :) (There is a photo of one of my polymer clay dolls in my miniature slideshow--it got there by accident along with the pic of the Virgin Mary toasted cheese sandwhich)

August 31, 2008 at 7:54 PM

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