Monday, June 25, 2012

Cusp Song of the Day: Miracles

From Chapter 8: Red Octopus came out in June of 1975 and by the end of summer was on its way to becoming the biggest selling album in the history of Jefferson Airplane/Jefferson Starship. In part this success is due to "Miracles," a mellow, jazz-inflected tune by Marty Balin that was the band’s highest charting single – yes, even higher than “Somebody to Love.”

The album versions of many songs are edited for single release, typically to bring them closer to the classic three-minute pop song length. Certainly this was part of the reason for the edits done to “Miracles.” But another reason was to remove a line that even now would raise eyebrows. Let’s just say it refers to getting a taste of the “real world.”

In Cusp, “Miracles” is the punctuation to Karen and Patrick’s breakup: “I start the engine.  ‘Miracles’ by Jefferson Starship plays on the radio: If only I believed what Patrick believed, we’d get by. But the only miracle I believe in is that I made it through that conversation. As I leave the parking lot, my red tail lights match the glow of the cigarette from my arm held out the window.” Months later, after a different kind of romantic let-down, she hears the song again and feels fresh guilt for how she treated her first real boyfriend.

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