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This Song Rips: Descendents “Jean is Dead”

Some people never get punk music. They mistake rawness of emotion for a lack of sophistication and a lack of sophistication for puerility. But to my mind there is no other music that works on such a fundamental level, with such an economy of words and sounds, that it taps into your most primal emotions and lets you vent them all out in two minute bursts of catharsis. It’s like in that scene in Ordinary People when Conrad’s walls finally break down and he says, “I need something. It just keeps coming. I can’t make it stop.”

For every time your emotions are boiling over, there’s a punk song to get you through it, like this song from the Descendents. The first song in this clip, “Jean is Dead” is such a pure response to a complex and heartbreaking situation for the young singer. (Note the tie back to Ordinary People in the subject matter. Great book and movie. Anyway…) This song rips.

You should have told me. I should have known.
Now you’re gone, and I’m alone.
Your mother told me last night on the phone.
Why’d you do it? Now I’m alone.
I would have helped you, would have done anything.
I would have taken you with me or bought you a ring,
But now you’re gone and I’m alone.

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