Song of the Day, April 1: The Great Puzzle by Jules Shear

ShearPuzzlesignedToday’s song is the title track from Jules Shear’s 1992 masterpiece. The track is a nice statement of purpose for the talented songwriter’s long career. Smart and insightful, it’s a look at the challenges of everyday life. Despite the six-minute-plus running time, Shear avoids providing a mere catalog of catastrophe; instead, it’s a realistic assessment of personal ups and downs, cleverly paced. Shear’s vocals are at their best on this song as he gives a warmly Dylanesque delivery. The chorus is brief and to the point, summing up a practical but cautiously optimistic worldview that anchors the album and resonates through all Shear’s best work:

It’s a great puzzle,
But you’ve got to like games.

Enjoy this lovely song today, and may the tricks life plays amuse but never fool you.

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About Robert Hulshof-Schmidt
Freelance writer, researcher, online comic vendor, and project manager. Fan of a wide range of music -- especially folk and 80s pop -- vintage comics, British TV, and LGBT fiction.

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