April 1st Celebrations

Happy Birthday to our two great nephews Ethan and Blake who turn two years old today!


Two of my favorite activist musicians celebrate April 1st, (April Fools Day) in two unique ways.

1. Patti Smith, “April Fool” from Banga

April Fool was inspired by the life and work of Russian writer Nikolai Gogol who was born on April 1, 1809. The music was written by Tony Shanahan.

The song is dedicated to my friend Milos who not only had a rusted bike but introduced me to the writings of Bulgakov and Gogol. Both of these great writers influenced lyrics on the album Banga.

“And St. Petersburg was left without Akakiy Akakievitch, as though he had never lived there. A being disappeared who was protected by none, dear to none, interesting to none, and who never even attracted to himself the
attention of those students of human nature who omit no opportunity of thrusting a pin through a common fly, and examining it under the microscope. A being who bore meekly the jibes of the department, and went
to his grave without having done one unusual deed, but to whom,
nevertheless, at the close of his life appeared a bright visitant in the
form of an overcoat, which momentarily cheered his poor life, and upon
whom, thereafter, an intolerable misfortune descended, just as it descends
upon the mighty of this world!”

—Nikolai Gogol, “The Overcoat” {Read the text}


Come be my April Fool
Come you’re the only one
Come on your rusted bike
Come we’ll break all the rules

We’ll ride like writers ride
Neither rich nor broke
We’ll race through alleyways
In our tattered cloaks so

Come be my April Fool
Come we’ll break all the rules

We’ll burn all of our poems
Add to God’s debris
We’ll pray to all of our saints
Icons of mystery
We’ll tramp through the mire
When our souls feel dead
With laughter we’ll inspire
Then back to life again

Come you’re the only one
Come be my April Fool
Come come
Be my April Fool
We’ll break all the rules

© 2012 Patti Smith


2. The late, great Gil Scott-Heron was born on April 1st. He would have been 66  today.

“Because the pardon you gave was not yours to give.”


3 Replies to “April 1st Celebrations”

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