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The Magnetic Fields: 50 Song Memoir

The Magnetic Fields

Stephin Merritt of The Magnetic Fields catalogues a life in verse with 50 songs, each dedicated to one of his years on earth over the course of two nights.

With black humour and disarming frankness, Merritt guides us on a chronological journey through his life. From his birth, via enforced beatnik Buddhist retreats, to stumbling back from glamorous excess of 80s New York discos – his deep, affectingly deadpan bass tells a personal history through understatedly theatrical Pop miniatures.

It’s not Merritt’s first time undertaking such a gargantuan and unique project. His writing for The Magnetic Fields often has a conceptual structure and focus – their breakthrough record 69 Love Songs was, as the name suggests, a collection of 69 love songs, while 2004’s i contained songs whose titles each began with the letter ‘I’. This project presents the live rendition of 50 Song Memoir, a five-disc chronicle of the songwriter’s first 50 years on earth.


Tagged with: Contemporary music

The first night sees Merritt take us through his first quarter century and the second from his 26th birthday to age 50.


‘Some songs are drily or blackly funny, others are wickedly vengeful‘


a photo of magnetic fields the record

Watch: Magnetic Fields on Youtube

Look inside The Magnetic Fields' five-LP 50 Song Memoir, which chronicles the 50 years of Stephin Merritt's life with one song per year.

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