THE BEEHIVE QUEEN OF SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE COMMITS POLITICAL SUICIDE WITH OSCAR WINNER
In Welfare Thee Well, one of the four plays comprising Political Suicide, a young woman sings, We all got worries, we all got hurdles, we all got burdens to bear. “I wanted it to sound like a spiritual,” Ernest said. “Whether the character is played by a woman of color or a Caucasian actress or Asian, the song is coming from a dark and honest place, and what I heard in my head was just that, an almost religious musical outcry, as if she’s praying.” The play is very, very funny but it’s not a comedy; it’s about repression and fighting against the forces of authority and control that can keep a person down. The melody Joe Deleault created echoes that sentiment, rooted in an African rhythm, it’s a spiritual for modern times.
Joe had just done a gig with Christine Ohlman, resident singer with the Saturday Night Live band, the Beehive Queen of hard-rocking blues, and not a performer one would immediately associate with church music. But Ernest fell in love with her extraordinary, glass-shattering voice and Joe asked if she’d consider singing “Someone To Care.”
“In a New York second,” she said. Joe sent her a rough guitar demo, Christine went into her studio in Manhattan and sang the song a cappella and turned it into a force of nature.
Ernest used Christine’s version, now part of the Find The Sun CD, as background and entr’acte music in his production of POLITICAL SUICIDE, “but it’s way more than a sound track,” he said. “It’s another character in the play. It tells the audience exactly what I wanted to convey: that we’re all having a lotta laughs here, funny plays, great stuff, great observation, if I may say so, on the curious and riotous complications of our times, but this collection, like life, is serious business and Christine’s remarkable rendition of “Someone To Care” doesn’t let anyone forget it.” I watch you and wonder what storm cloud you’re under, if ever you’re lost in the downpour and thunder, and I wonder if you’re watching me, too.
SOMEONE TO CARE*
Lyrics by Ernest Thompson
Music by Joe Deleault
Vocals by Christine Ohlman
*Licensing rights must be obtained and are available through The Office of Ernest Thompson. Click here.