Song of the Day, Febrary 24: Quite Ugly One Morning by Warren Zevon

zevonbaduglyToday’s song is a delightfully charming look at life on the day after nuclear Armageddon. Warren Zevon’s 1991 album Mr. Bad Example is classic Zevon, blending dark tales, wry wit, odd characters, and sinister dealings. The finest moment is Quite Ugly One Morning.

Opening with the ominous “Don’t the sky look funny? Don’t it look kinda chewed-on like?”, Zevon offers a make-the-best-of-it pitch for dealing with the day after. He’s in great voice, with the desperate wink behind the lyric shining through his vocals. While the “flash of light” mentioned in the chorus makes the subject clear, the elliptical nature of the song lets the devastation apply to many kinds of tragedy, a nice Zevon twist. The singer’s regular collaborators provide stellar backing with multi-instrumentalist David Lindley contributing exotic elements on the saz and the cümbüş. The result is wonderfully engaging.

Enjoy this delightful song today.

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