Sunday, July 11, 2010

"Luka" by Suzanne Vega

As I have so often said, it's rare enough for a song that isn't about 'love'* to hit the pop charts that the phenomenon is just the sort of thing which calls out for a closer analysis by the Pop Culture Institute; in fact, most of the music I post here I like to be about something, rather than a lot of that ooh baby baby jive. Thanks to an heroic intake of porn, I have nothing but disdain for romance - especially of the saccharine and false variety liable to be crooned. Yuck!

One of the finest such songs - a song that's actually about something! - was a monster hit for birthday gal Suzanne Vega in 1987. Luka is the story of a little boy being physically abused in his home, told from the perspective of a neighbour he's befriended. You'd have to be a robot not to be moved by the sweet voice and nimble strumming of Vega, especially when they wrap themselves around a fairytale-like story - all qualities neatly captured by the song's video.

In the video Luka is played by Jason Cerbone, who later grew up to be a professional actor, playing Jackie Aprile, Jr. on the hit HBO series, The Sopranos, who could have presumably then gone back to the old neighbourhood and whacked Luka's old man. Just as a for instance...

*Or sex, as it's better known these days.
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