David Byrne's latest project about Imelda Marcos is about to come out, and I'm kinda fascinated by it. It's like a rock opera, but for dance clubs.
Here's how the project is described:
"Through a series of songs written by David Byrne, with musical contributions from Fatboy Slim (Norman Cook), Songs from Here Lies Love presents Imelda Marcos meditating on events in her life, from her childhood spent in poverty and her rise to power to her ultimate departure from the palace. In particular, the production looks at the relationship between Imelda and a servant from her childhood, Estrella Cumpas, who appeared at key moments in Imelda's life."
Byrne really couches the project in terms of power (see quote below), but of course the project seems so full of potential for analysis from a critical Filipino studies perspective.
“The story I am interested in is about asking what drives a powerful person—what makes them tick? How do they make and then remake themselves? I thought to myself, wouldn’t it be great if—as this piece would be principally composed of clubby dance music—one could experience it in a club setting? Could one bring a ‘story’ and a kind of theater to the disco? Was that possible? If so, wouldn’t that be amazing!”
I haven't listened to the whole album yet, but the Santigold track is pretty good. You can get a free download of the song on DB's site.