I went to see Mike Scott and the Waterboys at Hammersmith Apollo last night. It was a truly great show.
The second half of their set was devoted to songs from his most recent album: An Audience With Mr. Yeats, where he has set Yeat’s poems to his own music.
Among other songs performed last night, was ‘September 1913’ which is a vitriolic comment on the mercenary materialism that Yeats saw in his country at that time. A collusion between big business and politicians & in Ireland’s case then, the priesthood too.
‘What need you, being come to sense,
But fumble in a greasy till
And add the halfpence to the pence
And prayer to shivering prayer, until
You have dried the marrow from the bone?’
And almost 100 years later, given the news in this weekend’s papers, what has changed?
It prompted me to quickly put a topical photo-montage together, with apologies to Stanley Kramer’s groundbreaking 1960’s film; though I’m certain that Yeat’s powerful words will last a whole lot longer than my comic attempt at political comment…