Episode 60 
“Tight Connection to My Heart (Has Anybody Seen My Love)/Someone’s Got a Hold of My Heart.”
Empire Burlesque. The Bootleg Series, Vol. 1-3. 
Blockhouse. 
#3 of Music Video Month 2018.
Recorded July 8, 2018. 

Context (6:15)

Originally, Empire Burlesque‘s “Tight Connection to My Heart (Has Anybody Seen My Love)” and “Someone’s Got a Hold of My Heart” released on The Bootleg Series, Volume 1-3 were going to be separate episodes but it should come as no surprise that we’ve combined them.

He first tinkered with the song at Power Station Studios in New York City on April 16, 1983 (over 6 takes). He’d return to it on April 25 (over 3 takes, including the one on Volume 1-3) and April 26 (2 takes). After Infidels came and went, he dusted “Someone’s Got a Hold of My Heart” for a new recording on December 22, 1984. He gave it a new paint job with overdubs in January 1985 and now it’s “Tight Connection to My Heart (Has Anybody Seen My Love).”

He’s only performed the song 14 times, from January 1990 to November 1993. The best version of the song is Sheila Atim’s rendition for the Bob Dylan musical, Girl from the North Country

Songs Itself (12:00)

The cinematic quality of the song is apparent. Given the timeline, coupled with “Maybe Someday” coming after this, old cinema is basically his default language at this point. While Kelly didn’t care for “Someone’s Got a Hold of My Heart,” both agreed that individual pieces of “Tight Connection” pale against it, except for the line about getting shot for resisting arrest. 

Between the two, there’s so many references to movies and plays, including: Sicocco (1951), Sahara (1943), Tokyo Joe (1949), Madame Butterfly (1898), “The Squire of Gothos” episode of Star Trek (1967), Maltese Falcon (1941), Oklahoma Kid (1939), Town Without Pity (1961), Johnny Angel (1945) and Now and Forever (1934). It’s not that this obsession doesn’t pay off (hello, “Brownsville Girl”) but it’s a bit tedious if you’re spending a freakin’ week with this shit.

In the end, there’s more meet on “Someone’s Got a Hold of My Heart”‘s bones. From I’ve been to Babylon, I gotta confess to the mysterious I could still hear the voice crying in the wildness to the narrative tension between achieving grace and succumbing to the more earthly desires in I never did learn to drink that blood and call it wine. For that reason, we take “Someone’s” over the tacky “Tight Connection” any day. 

Mixed Up Confusion

We didn’t just record an episode of Sign on the Window! No, we also have a special Mixed Up Confusion for Music Video Month! This one you need to see to believe. We talk “Tight Connection to My Heart” and the 1980s in music videos, perhaps its heyday.

Recommendations (43:00)

Kelly watched the second season of GLOW on Netflix.

Daniel listened to the new album from Damien Jurado The Horizon Just Laughed and caught up on some podcasts: Athletico Mince from Bob Mortimer and Andy Dawson, Omnibus with Ken Jennings and John Roderick, and Home of the Brave from Scott Carrier.

Endings

Nearly done with Music Video Month! Our penultimate for this year jumps us to the year 2000. Wonder Boys is the movie, “Things Have Changed” is the song.

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Published by Daniel

Occasional writer, persistent nomad; restless, moving, changing. Currently in Portland, Oregon.

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