6 - The Michigan Daily - Weekend etc. - Thursday, April 7, 1994
'Proclaim' t fame
Dancing the hoochie.
By TOM ERLEWINE
About this time last year, Craig
and Charlie Reed, the two members
of Scottish pop duo the Proclaimers,
were wallowing in the "where are
they now" file. It had been five years
since their last album, "Sunshine on
Leilith," which wasn't even close to a
hit over here in America. If the broth-
ers ever did release a follow-up, there
was no guarantee that they would
have had an audience at all.
But something happened last sum-
mer. "I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)," a
song from their last album, appeared
on the soundtrack to the Johnny Depp
movie, "Benny and Joon." While the
movie didn't exactly break box-of-
fice records, "I'm Gonna Be" popped
up on playlists across the country.
Soon, the Proclaimers had a bona-
fide hit on their hands from an album
that was1five years old. All of a sudden,
they went from forgotten hand to pop
All of this has raised expectations
for their new album which finally hit
stores last month. "Hit the Highway"
should please fansof their surprise hit
single; it's a raucous, righteous record
with several potential hits, including
the first single "Let's Get Married."
The Proclaimers intend to support the
album with a full world tour this year,
scheduled to hit the States in the
middle of the summer.
Despite the high expectations
raised in the wake of"I'm Gonna Be."
the duo doesn't feel much pressure to
follow through with anothersmash hit.
"We always thought we'd do(well in)
the States," explained Charlie Reed,
"but never in our wildest dreams did
we ever think we'd ever have a big hit
single like that."
Though it may appear that the
Proclaimers, in the wake of their hit,
finished the new album quickly, Reed
recalled, "We were almost ready to go
anyway. We had eight out of the 10
original songs complete and we were
just working on the lyrics for the last
couple when the thing happened in
the States. What (I'm Gonna Be')
did do. is when we came back from
the States, I guess we went into the
studio with more confidence. But the
record company was always very good
with us. They signed us because we
were different: I don't think they
signed us for the huge commercial
expectations anyway. so wemore than
fulfilled any expectations both we
and the record company had. I guess
they were glad we were just back in
the studio making a new record."
By anyone's standards, "Hit the
Highway" was difficult to make. Of
course, the duo never intended to
spend six years working on a record,
but things kept getting in the way.
"Basically, the first year or two we
spent a lot of time touring on 'Sun-
shine on Leilith,"' explained Reed.
"After that we figured it would take
six months for us to write a new one
and it just didn't work out. It was after
a few years of nothing happening,
As so often seems to happen after
the end of March,it is now April. And
April is an interesting month, for April
embraces at once the sublimity of
renewal and the bureaucratic stagna-
tion of tax collection. As the Chris-
tian faith instructs, long ago in April,
The Proclaimers will walk 500 miles on tour. Or maybe they'll take a bus.
everything happened at once."
Those few years of nothing were
very hard on Charlie. "For me, I went
into a periodofdepression for acouple
of years,"he revealed,""because things
just weren't happening and there was
all sorts of shit in my personal life. It
got particularly had for a while. But
you get through these things and you
sort of grow up a bit when things like
that happen. When you get through it.
you feel a better man."
At the time. Charlie did question
the future of the Proclaimers. "I won-
dered for a while whether we were
gonna be able to make another record,"
he remembered. "but I never once
said I wanna quit, not even in the
worst pain. (Making records is) what
I want to do and it's all I want to do."
And that's all the Proclaimers are
going to be doing, at least for now.
"We're gonna be on tour for a long
time," said Reed, "Our aim is to sort
of wind down the tour towards the
end ofthe year and then just get straight
into writing the new record. I don't
believe it'll ever take this long again.,.
We're never gonna survive unless we get a little crazy
There issomethingabout thiscrazyever-chang-
ing weather that hasgot my head spinninginseveral
directions. It seems like one minute I'm basking in
the sunlight as a warm breeze blows through my
JESSIE A A the next I
A * raise on
my arms. I
n e v e r
k n o w
when I wake up ifi should wear shorts orasnowsuit.
so of course I pick the wrong one.
As a result of this havoc the weather is wreak-
ing upon me, I have been having a lot of random
thoughts and flashbacks on my life. There's some-
thing about the sun peeking through every now and
again that distracts me and prevents lone-term
focusing on any one thing. Even writing this col-
umn has proven to be quite a challenge.
I don't remember ever having spring fever
quite as badly as I am experiencing it this year.
Maybe it's because there are so many unanswered
questions in my life right now.
I've suddenly realized that for the first tine
ever, April has arrived and I have no idea what I
will be doing this summer, where I will be living in
on Easter day, Jesus Christ arose from
the dead and, yeah, was audited.
Jesus faced some confusing issues
in filing his taxes. Do disciples count
as tax deductions? If one is the Son of'
God but no longer living at home, is
one considered a dependent? Need
one report earnings from a period
during which one was not in fact
Jesus isn't the only one who has
trouble with filing taxes. For this rea-
son, I'd like to offer this tax primer
called, "Taxes: What the Hell'?"
The first step in paying your taxes
is understanding the purpose behind
taxation. When you know why you're
filing themthe process seemsso much
less odious. Taxes were invented by
Capoba. Originally, subjects were
required to bring in prizes for the kine,
as a sign of their devotion. Prizes
were things like cattle, slaves. extra
wives or even something the subject
made all by himsel l, because that
showed how much the subject really
cared. One creative subject even put
baloney on his head and danced the
hoochie-koochie. He was killed.
Today, taxes are a part of the so-
cial contract which binds us together
under a governmi ent. By giying the
government money to run programs
lor the ceneral welfare of the nation.
vae submit ourselves to the constraint
of a public authority for the mutual
inproemuenlit of our lires. Also. the
xovernmentn mod ulates tax at ion so as
to encourage a healthy economic en-
Alter appealln.g to anyx charts.
graphs and equations. governmeit
econoi sts inform the president that
they have no idea what's in on
The president adjusts taxes accord-
ngly The presiden t also cooperates
with the Federal Reserve. which con-
trolls monetary policy. TheFed.as it's
known to econoiics prolessors. is
independent. but members are selected
by the president from a g)roup of top-
level high school riends.
So by filing taxes you are per-
foriing a duty to vourself as a citi-
zen. Think of it as taking out the
garbage. Paying your taxes stinks:
but if you don't do it, flies will come.
Now we are ready to consider the
process of'filing taxes. As many of us
have come to know - all too pail-
fully - motivation is only half the
battle. The other half is busy work.
Perhaps the best place to start is with,
some important changes that have
occurred in the federal income tax.
The IRS tells us that married U.S.
citizens must now apply for a Sched-
ule B reduction packet before filing
the W-4 form. Also, pensions and
annuities should be reported on the
1040A rather than the regular 1040,
unless you are over 65, because we
know you folks cannot even operate a
VCR f'or the most part. You folks just
do what you've been doing.
Meanwhile, returns fron the pre-
vious year's 1040. if amounting to
more than the current year, may be
noted on the Unearned Income see-
Jesus isn't the only
one who has trouble
with filing taxes. For
this reason, I'd like to
offer this tax primer
called, 'Taxes: What
tion of the UB-40 cover of "Red Red
Wine." If' you are a f'irst time filer. you
should list previous income on the
WD-40. If you were widowed before
1993 and live with a seilf-emploved
blind citizen who receives veterans
henefits. you should call the police
immediately. And if you ourself are
blind and hake more than S20,000 in
l'rozen trust funds. and the aho e situ
ation holds. except for having been
wyidowed. put your foreead under a
table leg and haxe someor celse pushl
dow n on the table with as much force
as is humanly possible un t il you are in
As you can see. the IRS likes to
hake a little fun x with you. In fact.
taxation today is not so far from put-
ung balonev on your hicad and danc-
ing the hoochie-koochi 1- and about
asdangerous. Anyway. hopefully thi',
introduction to the world cf taxes has
facilitated your participation in this
long-standing societal nstitution. I
am suddenly reminded ofan old apho-
rism: "A baby turtle will onlk grow as
many inches as it can crawl in an
I didn't say it was rclexant. I just
said I was reminded of it.
the fall or which classes I will be CRISPing into.
These were the things that I used to plan for and
obsess about for weeks, even months. in advance.
It seems that these days I am more concerned with
which flavors of ice cream I amr goirg to have on
my nightly Stucchi's run.
Amidst all the papers and final projects. the
sun, when it decides to make an appearance. has
taken this opportunity to melt my brain. Now. I am
normally an upfront person -some might even call
me blunt - but recently things just coie flying out
of my mouth before I even have a chance to think
about what I have said. This is starting to shock
some of my friends.
It seems as if I am not the only one who has
been al'fected by thisminid-melting (althoughI Iwill
admit that my particular case may be a bit more
severe than most). But to illustrate my point. I
thought I would share a f'cw of the cra/y scenes I
have witnessed of late.
My friend Li, was recently asked if she had her
car so that she could drive my friend Mel home. Liz
said no but offered this alternative: "Jessie and I
could pick youI up on our shoulders and run."
I have a another friend who has been searchin L
through the list of Daily alums in hopes of findinrg
just the right connection to get hera job upon her up-
and-comin graduation. She sat in the corner of the
roonhunched overherlistoccasionallvellin out
names, asking if they sounded familiar to an me.
This was quite amusing to those of watchine her
slowly lose her mind. Sheon the other hand, was not
as amused."I'n glad I'm providing amusement for
Mona recently learned of the impending nup-
tials of former MIchigan basketball player. James
Voskuil. and instead of taking it in stride. she fell
apart. It was as if she had learned of the death of a
nearand dear f'riend. My onlyquestiori was. "What-
ever happened to George'"
Neils and Dustin were haniing out in their
apart ment devising ways to successfully avoid
going to the library. So what did thue com 1u1
with'.' Balloon basketball. of course. But to add a
little challenge Neils decided to use his lacrosse
stick to guide the balloon. He was actually 'retty
good at this new and potentially profcssionial sport:
Dustin was not.
Thesearea fewsnippets frorrm thecraxicxistence
I have been leading as of late. I sure hope the sun
sticks around but I wish mvlife would reach some
sort of equilibrium. On second thought. hlfe is a
h(1 lot imore fun when things get nuts.
Sol hope somc of you arc experiencing a little hit
of insanity. Then at least I wOn't be alone. Beam me
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STUDENTS OF COLOR
THURSDAY " APRIL 7, 1994
Anderson Room jAdmissions Panel Presentauon
11:0 OOamL-3:00 pmr
Pendleton Room1 Law Fair