John Cale – Andalucia

You can imagine what happened. Today was another day where I burnt 1919 kilojoule on the stationary bicycle. It is a 27 minute program starting with two minute intervals of 250, 275 and 300 watt. Then I reach the 325 watt plateau which lasts 15 minutes and the last six minutes are descending down to 250 watt in two minute intervals again. By the way 1919 was the last year where swapping of the first two digits with the last two did not change the number. The next one will be 2020. And 1919 is no prime number. As all four digit figures which are permutable in this way it is a multiple of 101. Enough playing around with digits now.

Let’s come back to Paris 1919. This song is actually my favourite of the album. Another declaration of love. This time to a geographical place, the South of Spain. It starts with this great line where syllables seem to be permutated in a magic way that it sounds like a nursery rhyme:

Andalucia when can I see you
When it is snowing out again
Farmer John wants you
Louder and softer closer and nearer

Farmer John who is probably John Cale himself will have to wait for a long time to see Andalucia again as it rarely snows there. Except in the Sierra Nevada but there is no mention of a mountain range in the lyrics. Again Cale sings in a sweet and tender way, there is a lot of yearning and longing for the object of desire in his voice. And in the music as well: the sublime acoustic guitar, the keyboards which stay nicely in the background and finally the pedal steel guitar adding the typical country sentiment to this outspoken ballad.

Needing you taking you keeping you leaving you
In a year and a day to be sure
That your face doesn’t alter
Your words never falter — I love you

After a one year stay the face of Andalucia will be almost the same as on the first day. The seasons will have gone full circle. Spanish people – especially those from the South – don’t hesitate with words, they love talking and apparently Cale loves that too.

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