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Omaha Magazine

Otis Twelve: Music to My Ears (Where Else?)

Apr 29, 2021 03:47PM ● By Otis Twelve
Otis Twelve column photo

If you’re like me, you love music. It’s a huge influence on our lives. Music brings us sweet memories, needed comfort, excitement, and inspiration. It does indeed hath the power to soothe the savage beast—or so says William Congreve.

Note: If you find yourself in a situation where you are threatened by a “savage beast”—let’s say a famished mountain lion corners you when you are out on your morning jog—don’t actually expect that to be true. Though the faint sound of Prince leaking from your earbuds while the big cat sups on your innards might offer your executioner a bit of enjoyable dinner music, that hardly constitutes a calm “savage beast,” does it?  My guess is that it was your delicious liver, not the tune, that gave comfort to the wily predator. It’s just another way music misleads us.

Many of us make the mistake of seeking and unfortunately finding guidance in songs. This has resulted in a lot of sad consequences for the polyphonically obsessed.

For instance, there is absolutely no reason to “Climb Every Mountain.” Why on earth would that ever be a good idea? First of all, most of us humans are not mountain climbers, nor should we be. Second, just “because something is there” as a motivation for doing anything is beyond foolish. Third, many of us have poor balance, and quite a few of us are afraid of heights. And fourth, it goes without saying that if we all would climb every mountain we’d never get anything else done. Fifth, it is a well-known fact that we were born to run and tramps like us aren’t properly dressed for snowy mountaintops.

Another tune tells us as” you walk through a storm, hold your head up high.” Now that’s real idiocy. In fact, it’s like chapter one in a book titled, “How To Get Struck By Lightning.”  If a storm hits, stay in the clubhouse and “Let It Be.”

Take it from me; a “Spoonful of Sugar” does not help the medicine go down. But, a shot of bourbon with a spoonful of sugar does, “Sweet Child of Mine.”

We need to remember that, “Put On A Happy Face” does not work as advice to an upset woman. Try saying that at the wrong time and it’s “Bye, Bye, Love.” Mansplaining is spelled “M”…I say “A” etc.

“You’ll Never Walk Alone?”  That’s a load of rot. On the cold, rainy evening before trash day, you think someone will volunteer to help you schlepp the cans to the curb. Hah!  Waiting for help?  Dream on, friend. You will walk alone, I guarantee it. 

And do not be such a cockeyed optimist that you expect that the “Sun Will Come Out Tomorrow.”  That’s just not happening here in Omaha. We are in for another week of gray clouds. I heard that through the grapevine.

Finally, you absolutely do not need to “Fight for Your Right to Party,” Garth. You just don’t. 

Otis Twelve hosts the radio program Early Morning Classics with Otis Twelve on 90.7 KVNO, weekday mornings from 6-10 a.m. Visit for more information.

This article originally appeared in the May issue of Omaha Magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.  

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