Archive | Mar 12, 2018

Certain Songs #1154: The Miss Alans – “Westchester, NY #105”

Album: Remnants
Year: 1988

Of course, it’s never been totally uncommon for artists to recontextualize outside source material for song lyrics. On Hootenanny, Paul Westerberg used classified ads as the source material for “Lovelines” and Michael Stipe randomly quoted the liner notes of a gospel album for the much-beloved “Voice of Harold” b-side.

And so when Scott Oliver used excerpts from a letter that Andrea wrote him when she was at Sarah Lawrence, he may or may not have been thinking about these antecedents, or he may have just wanted something that fit the melancholy waltz that he and his band had come up with.

A waltz that is still one of my very favorite Miss Alans songs.