“Come Together Wright Now”

In the video below—which you can also watch on our YouTube channel—we parody John Lennon’s “Come Together” to celebrate the genius of Frank Lloyd Wright and the labor of the 100′s who volunteer at the Frank Lloyd Wright Preservation Trust. What fun!  But mucho, mucho apologies to Mr. Lennon.

Frank Lloyd WrightCould a person who thought he was so right have a better name than Wright, or a better name to pun on?  There’s the FLW Preservation Trust’s gift catalog “Buy Wright,” and their magazine “Wright Angles.” Want to take a local tour?  There’s one called “Wright Around Chicago.”  You get the idea.

So my wife Linda—who manages all those Trust volunteers—thought, Why not “Come Together Wright Now” as the theme for the 2013 Volunteer Appreciation Party?  And why not a parody of Lennon’s song as the party’s centerpiece?  Lots of things seemed to her to be coming together for the Frank Lloyd Wright Preservation Trust, including the recent addition of The Rookery, Bach House, and Unity Temple to their already-distinguished tour sites.  (It’s managed Wright’s Home and Studio in Oak Park and Robie House in Hyde Park for decades.)  She enlisted me and volunteer, artist, and blogger extraordinaire Jim Nedza to write the parody, wrote a few lines herself, and for the music she turned, of course, to Dan Guzman.  We kept several Lennon lines because: Frank Lloyd Wright often wore a flat top hat, was infamous early on for long hair, and lived a life and created an art about freedom. He always seemed to be groovin’ one way or the other.

Here come old flat top
He come groovin’ up slowly
He got too few idols
His Dad holy roller
He got hair down below his knees
Hate on the conformer
He just do what he please

His Mama hung up
He be architect big shot
He cop prairie flatness
He shoot cantilever
He got airs and ego to a tee
Every thing he draw up
Will make big history

Come together Wright now…over me

He know organic
He do nature worship
He got Master Complex
He one boldness junkie
He drape capes down below his knee
One thing he will tell you
Is you got to be free

Come together Wright now…

We volunteering
We do every weather
We hoe weedy garden
We take giant busload
We say this and that and this you see
Everything good looking
Cause he need it to be

Come together Wright now…
Come together—yeah!

We were working with two geniuses here.  “Come Together” is one of my top-10 Beatles favorites, and its stature seems to rise for everyone as years go by.  When you parody a great song you realize how really great it is, the genius of Lennon’s music and lyrics striking you harder each time you hear it.

The song was about Timothy Leary.  Frank Lloyd Wright’s egoism certainly rivaled Leary’s.  The video above begins with one of many famous Wright pronouncements: “I’ve been accused of saying I was the greatest architect in the world, and if I had said so, I don’t think it would be very…arrogant.”    He so firmly believed in his greatness, the greatness of his work, but that priceless pause, that slight smile, before the word “arrogant” hints that maybe he took his greatness with some grain of salt—as little, as miniscule, as that grain might have been.  The history he made required far less ingestion than Leary’s, though we know many had to swallow a lot to deal with his thorny genius.  History’s judgment of Frank Lloyd Wright’s work, however, seems to glow brighter and brighter.  He got that Wright.

Sorry.  That couldn’t be helped. It just couldn’t. Whether we got it Wright (there it is again!) is another matter, but we hope you enjoy it.

  • Pictures near video’s end are from the 2013 Volunteer Appreciation Party, an important Trust event for recognizing and building its volunteer community.
  • See Jim Nedza’s DesignSlinger website on Chicago architecture.
  • Hear more of Dan Guzman’s music.
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One Response to “Come Together Wright Now”

  1. Jim says:

    It was a great project to work on together.
    We certainly got that Wright right!

    Jim

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