Does anybody remember a singer called Dido? There is an SOS out on her. Does anyone know if she is even still singing? Is she coming up with something new? An album? I’ll even settle for a single at this point in time! Just one song! Surely Dido has not thrown it all away? She has not decided that this singing business and the intrusiveness of global fame is not worth it? She always seemed like a high maintenance chick to begin with. But isn't that why we fell in love with her music?
I know her music is not the most deep stuff. Considering all the poet musicians who are up in my gallery of heroes, she would get an F if it came to grading her lyrics solely on paper without her voice singing the words. Or the beats she managed to hook to them. But then she wouldn't be a musician if we were judging her solely by the greatness of her lyrics, would she? She would be a bon fide writer, the kind of writer she was set to become when she was still an unknown slaving away in a bookshop to pay her apartment bills and waking up with an aching head remembering that, "I drunk too much last night."
Wait a minute, what am I saying? Have I gone completely crazy?!? Listen to Life for Rent, the song. Listen to the whole album, I absolutely recommend it. But listen to Life for Rent in that album too. Bad song writer? I have changed my mind. Dido doesn't deserve an F! Dido has that gift more writers of "serious" songs, books could do more with (and yes, beginning with yours truly!), and she has it in abundance. Dido in her songs but especially in Life for Rent tells complex stories of heartbreak simply, hauntingly, beautifully.
Maybe I’m just a guy who loves to go against the grain sometimes just for the sake of it. But I never agreed with the critics who panned her second album, Life for Rent, after her debut, No Angel. (Life for Rent, definitely one of my favorite album titles!) But I'm digressing here. Dido's second album is my preferred if I was pushed to choose between her two efforts. Sophomore efforts are easy to pull off, it's the second one that counts in my book to prove you have it in you, you can make music out of nothing it will be worth listening to still.
Not that Life for Rent was made out of nothing and was simplay a money album. Far from it! You can't listen to a song like sand in my shoes and still claim this was a quick spin-off from No Angel. For God's sake, I usually hate activist music but This Land is Mine is one of the songs when I need a longish non-aggravating-but-I-nod my head to song I turn on. Among living singers, I think only Sophie B. Hawkins can preach in a song and I won't tune out or switch off. That is a huge achievement in my book.
As you must have surmised by now, I'm a Dido fan. Yes, I'm a guy and I'm a Dido fan. What you gonna do about it? What this Dido fan wants to know is, where is Dido?