(Northern) Soulklassieker du jour: Synthetic World

Jerry Williams aka Swamp Dogg is een ware culthero. Na jaren te hebben gedaan wat de platenmaatschappijen wilden en als dank door dezelfde maatschappijen systematisch  beroofd te zijn, besloot Williams eind jaren ’60 de grote labels een opgestoken middelvinger te geven en voortaan nog slechts de dingen te doen die hij zélf leuk vond. Hij veranderde zijn naam in Swamp Dogg want “I was tired of being a jukebox, singing all of the hits by Chuck Jackson, Ben E. King, etc., and being an R’n’B second banana. I couldn’t dance as good as Joe Tex, wasn’t pretty like Tommy Hunt, couldn’t compare vocally to Jackie Wilson and I didn’t have the sex appeal of Daffy Duck. I wanted to sing about everything and anything and not be pigeonholed by the industry. So I came up with the name Dogg because a dog can do anything, and anything a dog does never comes as a real surprise”.  Het eerste resultaat was Total Destruction of the Mind, volgens de mythe onder de invloed van LSD in één keer geschreven. Pure, rauwe Southern soul, met sterk geëngageerde teksten, subversief en geestig. Een perfecte plaat, die nu nog steeds even goed klinkt als in 1970.

Hey you, I’m up from the bayou,
Where wildlife runs free,
You could say that I’m country.
But let me tell you what I see.

Your world is plastic.
Can see through to the otherside.
Your cities are made of wood,
Antiques are what you’ve got inside.
Houses are paper but folks don’t hear a word you say.
Friendship’s like acid it burns as it slides away.

So you see, my patience is growin’ thin.
With this synthetic world we’re livin’ in.

The word immitation is goin cross the nation
What’s real has become a freak
Someone’s tryin’ to make me weak.
Strange initials to keep me blind.
Psychedelic music to blow my mind.

So you see, my patience is growin’ thin
With this synthetic world we’re livin’ in.

Spray to clear the air and its filled with spray.
Makin people die every day
Now I find I’m out of place
If I only have one face
All my friends have more than two
No longer must you be you
They found out how to transplant
Maybe has replaced can
So you see, my patience is growin’ thin
With this synthetic world we’re livin’ in.