10 to Spin | Clare Burson

Photo Credit: Erica Beckman

Sometimes I think of how life must have been for you here
What life could have been like for you here
What life should have been like here with you

On November 9th, 1938, Clare Burson’s grandmother, Helga Rabinowitsch, left Leipzig, Germany, for the United States. Rabinowitsch fled moments before the event now known as Kristallnacht, or “The Night of Broken Glass.” Or, frankly, the beginning of the Holocaust.

Sixty-five years later, while on tour, Burson returned to Germany and visited her grandmother’s home. She wrote “Magpies” about the experience, one of many songs off her latest album, Silver and Ash, about her grandmother’s early life.

It’s Burson’s finest hour as a songwriter, an honest and beautiful tribute to her grandmother and family. I’m glad I found it.

On Sunday, Burson, who now lives in Brooklyn, will be performing these songs at Off Broadway. $10 will get you in the door, so don’t miss it.

We’re proud to have Burson take part in our 10 to Spin series on the eve of her Saint Louis performance. Enjoy.

I’ve never been a particularly future-minded person. The question: “Where do you see yourself five years from now?” has left me stumped on many occasions. Instead, I’ve been more oriented towards the past – somewhat less uncertainty there, right? I was a history major in college, historical fiction (and sci-fi) clutters my bookshelves, and my most recent batch of songs mines the past for its subject matter. With this in mind, I’ve picked out a collection of songs that revolve around memory, nostalgia, impermanence, and what was as opposed to what will be. I wish I had written them all! –Clare Burson
Arcade Fire – We Used To Wait

Big Star – Nature Boy
Yeah Yeah Yeahs – Hysteric
Laura Veirs – Make Something Good

Neutral Milk Hotel – Holland, 1945 
Kathleen Edwards – Pink Emerson Radio [listen]

Elliott Smith – Between the Bars
Wilco – Kamera
Sam Phillips – Taking Pictures
Emmylou Harris – Roses in the Snow [listen]

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