Notes from New Sodom

... rantings, ravings and ramblings of strange fiction writer, THE.... Sodomite Hal Duncan!!

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Nowhere Town: Act ONE Scene IV

Act ONE Scene IV: The Record Shop

Lights fade. Exit JACK and CHORUS. Music rises and the lights come up as the intro to the next song kicks in. The platform now represents a record shop interior, while the rest of the stage represents the streets outside. The doorway is on the left side of the platform and a display stand cuts the platform in half. FAY stands behind the counterthat was previously the bar, running from front to back, stage-right.

Enter PUCK, a green-haired punk kid, wearing ripped-up and written-over school shirt and tie. Throughout the song the REGULARS enter and leave the shop or wander around as if browsing. Three of the REGULARS, all female – the FATES - are dressed identically, like some 60’s female soul group.

SONG: Junky For The Sound

With huge heaps of (Tell Me Why) I Don’t Like Mondays this is a minor key, piano-based number all flourishy tinkling on the ivories. Puck’s theme, this is one of the three key melodies of the entire musical, (together with "Nowhere Town" and "Tango For The Dead"). Backing vocals in square brackets overlap the previous line.

PUCK:

Another day, another pound.
[FATES: Another poor boy stuck in a nowhere town]
Another record bought
From the record shop
Across the town.
I go there every day I can
[FATES: Another poor boy stuck in a nowhere town]
Cause I’m a junky for the sound,
And the record shop’s my man.
And I just wanna listen to the bands
[FATES: Another poor boy stuck in a nowhere town]
Cause I’m a junky for the sound,
And the record shop-
The record shop’s my man.

PUCK enters the shop, starts looking through the display stand. Enter JACK on the streets outside, putting up posters for a gig that his band, Fagsmoke is to play that night.

PUCK:

The vinyl may be scratched, it may be old

REGULAR 1:

And there was not an era when
The music was so
Bought and sold.

PUCK [picking up a record]:

But I was never such a fan
Now I’m a junky for the sound,
And the record shop’s my man.

PUCK / REGULAR 1:

And now I gotta get all that I can

PUCK:

Cause I’m a junky for the sound,
And the record shop-
The record shop’s my man.

JACK enters the shop, carrying a rolled-up poster and a pile of flyers. The next few lines are spoken as the music plays between verses.

JACK: Hey, Fay, it’s your favourite gay. Any chance I could stick a poster up? Leave some flyers?

FAY [takes the poster from him]: Man, you guys finally got another gig? So some sucker actually booked you, and after the last time? And Joey still talking to you?

JACK: He loves me really. I give the best simulated head since the Lizard King himself. Besides we've got a new sound we're trying out. "Nowhere Town". Best song I've ever written. And it's, like, serious and shit.

FAY: That'll be the day. Wait a minute -- tonight? You’re leaving it a bit late.

JACK: Clipper dropped out.

FAY [laughing]: Fagsmoke’s filling in for Clipper? Man, they’re so straight-edge you can shave with their manifesto. You’ll get lynched.

JACK: Hey, we can do political.

FAY: Yeah… "Where’s My Fucking Record Contract?" is a cutting critique of capitalist imperialism.

JACK: Well… maybe I’ll throw in some queercore flag-waving bullshit for the skinheads.

FAY [ironic]: Well, that’ll be… interesting.

JACK: You coming along then?

FAY: Wouldn’t miss it for the world, man.

The music swells up again.

REGULAR 2:

I remember when CD’s first came out.
I remember thinking what the fuck
Is all this fuss here
All about.
Now I know, I understand.

PUCK / REGULAR 1 / REGULAR 2:

Cause I’m a junky for the sound,
And the record shop’s my man.

PUCK picks up a record and heads toward the counter, where JACK is standing.

REGULAR 2:

And tape or disc, who gives a damn.

PUCK turns back to sing his lines. JACK leaves the counter and heads towards the door, but pauses as PUCK sings.

PUCK:

Cause I’m a junky for the sound,
And the record shop-
The record shop’s my man.

An old-skool punk REGULAR comes to stand front and centre on the platform, looks at PUCK, then at JACK, who cannot see each other for the display. Again, the next few lines are spoken.

FAY: You again. In for your weekly fix, eh? So what are you going for this time?

PUCK: Um… uh… [holds up one record] New York Dolls… [another] Stooges.

FAY [appreciatively]: Nice. The old ones are the best, as they say.

REGULAR 3 (old-skool punk):

The kids are wearing what I used to wear.
And now it seems that I am almost
Hip when I was
Once a square.
They’re listening to all my favourite bands
The music that was lost and found.

JACK:

Yeah, cause Iggy Pop’s my man. [makes to leave, then stops again as PUCK sings]

PUCK:

And Joey is in heaven with a plan
Another junky for the sound
And a new Ramones fan.
And I confess it all; I raise my hand.

PUCK / REGULAR 1 / REGULAR 2 / REGULAR 3:

Cause I’m a junky for the sound,
And the record shop-

PUCK:

The record shop-
The record shop’s my man.

ALL:

And I’m a junky for the sound,
And the record shop’s my man.
[FATES: Another poor boy stuck in a nowhere town]
And I’m a junky for the sound,
And the record shop’s my man.
[FATES: Another poor boy stuck in a nowhere town]
And I’m a junky for the sound,
And the record shop’s my man.
[FATES: Another poor boy stuck in a nowhere town]
And I’m a junky for the sound,

PUCK [alone, slow and soft]:

And I guess I’m just... a junky for the sound.

JACK leaves, and exits stage-right, pausing as if to look in the shop window. PUCK has gone to the counter with a couple of records in hand, where FAY is putting up JACK’s poster. It shows a gun the barrel of which looks pretty phallic, to say the least. Exit JACK. PUCK looks at the poster as FAY rings up the sale.

FAY [as if broken off in mid flow]: -after discount for a regular customer. How does that sound?

PUCK: Uh… Yeah. Thanks.

FAY: Well, you know, if you were in here any more often, I might have to start charging rent.

PUCK [awkward]: Um… I guess. [He digs into his pockets, brings out a handful of coins, which he drops] Shit. Sorry… sorry.

FAY [amused]: It’s OK.

PUCK [picking up the coins and sorting out the correct change]: Shit. Fuck.

FAY: Relax.

PUCK [hands over the money]: Sorry. I think that’s right. Thanks.

FAY [handing him a flyer]: Hey. Gig tonight. Might be your kind of thing, I'm thinking. Band called Fagsmoke. Lead singer's a hoot.

PUCK: Thanks. Yeah, I'll see.

FAY shakes her head as PUCK backs away clumsily, mumbles a goodbye and exits.

FAY: Be seeing you.

The FATES walk up to the counter.

FAY: So, how’s the whole retro Motown thing working out for you guys, anyway? What are you calling yourselves these days? The Furies, wasn't it?

FATE 1: The Fates. [picks up a flyer]

FAY: That’s it. The Fates. Oh, honey, I don't think that'll be up your street.

FATE 1: You never know. Some interesting shit goes down when you least expect it.

FATE 2: And we got our fingers in more pies than you'd expect, sister.

FATE 3: We have eclectic interests.

FAY: Eclectic, eh? Amen to that.

***

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