A Post Every Day Until I'm Fifty Bent: the Book Life Life in L.A.

Be Like Zeppelin

March 19, 2016

This is the advice you get when you’re married to a sound engineer. I was sitting outside with Mauro, taking a break from writing. He asked me how it was going, and I said something about not being able to work one major part out of the first chapter, and that it had been bugging me for days, and that it was all I could think about.

“Just be honest,” he said. (That’s not the good part. But it is good advice.)

“Yeah, I’m trying, but it’s structure I’m having a hard time with.”

“It’s the old Steely Dan argument,” he said. We’ve talked about this a lot, because pretty much half of our conversations are about music, and not that you’d have a reason to but if you don’t believe me, read Why Does Everyone Hate Steely Dan? “You can go over and over something, and make it perfect. Steely Dan did that. Their music sounds perfect. They sat there going over every piece of instrumentation until it was perfect. But you don’t get the same feel from a Steely Dan song as you do from a Led Zeppelin song. Be like a Zeppelin song.”

(That was the good part. Because my husband is a fucking genius.)

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