Celia's Playlist

Click on the pictures of the cover art to hear the songs!

1. Horse with No Name - America (Emily)
A Horse with No Name is a folk-rock song by the band America. I find Celia to be a humble, compassionate and gentle character. This song seemed like it would appeal to Celia because of it’s calm and soothing tone, as well as the folk style of acoustic guitar. Being from Aztlan (originally Mexico) could have caused Celia to develop a taste for a certain style of music, such as folk rock or more traditional style - Celia isn’t exactly a heavy metal lover. In the chapter “Celia’s story”, Celia explains her illegal cross to the Unites States and the kerfuffle with the Boarder Patrol. Lyrics in A Horse with No Name may speak to Celia in a special way because of her struggle in the boarder crossing, such as:
After two days in the desert sun
My skin began to turn red
After three days in the desert fun

I was looking at a river bed

And the story it told of a river that flowed

Made me sad to think it was dead

After nine days I let the horse run free

'Cause the desert had turned to sea

There were plants and birds and rocks and things

there was sand and hills and rings

The ocean is a desert with it's life underground

And a perfect disguise above

Under the cities lies a heart made of ground

But the humans will give no love

2. Heart of Gold - Neil Young (Emily)
Heart of Gold is also a more traditional sounding folk-rock song by Neil Young. The song tells us of Young’s “search for a heart of gold”. Celia’s character is very gentle and caring, and finds the overall concept of providing clones for organ transplants disgusting and unfair, and feels sorry for Matt. Celia says to Tam Lin, “This Farm as been here for a hundred years. How many eejits do you think are buried under the poppies?” (Farmer 189), and continues to say “don’t you think that’s enough?” (Farmer 190) - expressing her feelings for the dystopia she lives in. Because she has immense love for Matt and is trapped in a world where she has to work and be around arrogant people such as MacGregor, I found that lyrics in Heart of Gold could speak to Celia in a way that reminds her of her search for a more fair and equal society.
I want to live,
I want to give
I've been a miner

for a heart of gold.

It's these expressions

I never give

That keep me searching

for a heart of gold

And I'm getting old.

3. Mrs. Robinson - Simon and Garfunkel (Tintin)

Throughout the novel, Celia is described as quite a religious woman, even through the worst of times she would put the Virgin of Guadalupe before herself. “‘Be careful!’ I cried. ‘Don’t hurt the Virgin!’ That’s how She got the chip on Her robe- when patrol dumped Her on the floor.” (Farmer 142) Her strong values are reflected through her everyday actions as well, lighting a holy candle each night in front of the statue of the Virgin of Guadalupe before either she or Matt slept. With all that said, Celia’s religious beliefs would tie quite nicely with the song Mrs. Robinson by Simon and Garfunkel. The sound of this song is somewhat folk-y and the lyrics help express her feelings towards the importance of religion. The chorus of the song is:

“And here’s to you, Mrs. Robinson,

Jesus loves you more than you will know,

wo wo wo

God bless you please, Mrs. Robinson,

Heaven holds a special place for those who pray,

Hey hey hey, hey hey hey”

Image from: http://ehaaye.typepad.com/blog/2011/10/the-best-of-simon-and-garfunkel-simon-and-garfunkel-download-online.html

4. First Train Home - Imogen Heap (Emily)
Throughout chapter 14 (Celia’s story), Celia explains her story to Matt and how she came to work for El Patron. Celia describes her hometown and how poor the living conditions were.
“I grew up in Aztlán,” she began, “in the same village where El Patron was born. It was poor then and it’s worse now. Nothing grew there except weeds, and they were so bitter that they made the donkeys throw up. Even roaches hitchhiked to the next town. That’s how bad it was.” (Farmer 140)
Later on, she describes how she dreamed of travelling and living in the Unites States. It seems that even working and living in the Alacran house can be difficult at times because of the culture and mood she is surrounded by. First Train Home is a song that talks about Imogen Heap’s current situation and how she feels she needs to escape, which I thought somewhat related to Celia’s situation. Some lyrics are:
Temporal dead zone where clocks are barely breathing
Yet no one cares to notice for all the yelling
All night clamor to hold it together.
I want to play--don't wait--forms in the hideaway
I want to get on with getting on with things
I want to run in fields, paint the kitchen
And love someone
And I can't do any of that here, can I?

The first 3 lines above can relate to the Alacran house and it’s overall environment and how everyone is oblivious to how horrible their look on cloning is. The rest of the lines above can relate to Celia’s perfect getaway and her craving for living in her own place in the United States. Overall, the song has a very sweet and calm tone to it that I think Celia would enjoy.

5. And Darling - Tegan & Sara (Tintin)
Though Matt was “lent” to Celia, she had always been a mother figure, caring for and nurturing Matt from the day he was harvested. She had provided shelter for him, fed and clothed him; essentially treating a complete outsider like one of her own. This bond between Matt and Celia bring happiness to Matt, he feels comfortable and accepted with Celia, and Celia benefits from their close relationship more and more as she becomes increasingly attached to the clone. For example: throughout The House of the Scorpion Celia refers to Matt as mi vida, meaning “my life” in Spanish. And Darling by Tegan and Sara is a song that communicates unconditional love. The first verse of the song is:

"Creep up and tell me that you

You love me more each time you

Look into my eyes, I feel like

I know you don't mean to be mean

I'm sure you know the same for me"

These lyrics are relevant to Celia’s situation, because her and Matt’s bond become closer and closer over the course of the novel. The last two lines align with Celia’s forgiveness towards Matt, for example: in Chapter 5 of The House of the Scorpion, when Celia discovers Matt alone in his sawdust kingdom instead of scolding the clone for disobeying her orders she is simply relieved that he is alive and safe. Finally, And Darling has an overall very calming and a somewhat strangely tense sound to it with straightforward lyrics. A song that Celia may find herself head-bobbing to, if I say so myself.

Image from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/If_It_Was_You

6. Strawberry Fields Forever - The Beatles (Emily)

Strawberry Fields Forever is a song written and performed by The Beatles. I find this song to give you a feeling of joy and overall content because of it’s light flute and calmness, as well as a very catchy chorus. Its lyrics also relate to the world seeming confusing and disturbing at times, and how escaping such a place and living in a whole new world would be nice for a change. This reminded me of Celia because of the stress she sometimes feels while living in the Alacran house, and how she has to deal with eejits and clones being mistreated.

7. Little Shadow - Yeah Yeah Yeahs [Acoustic] (Tintin)

Instantly after listening to Little Shadow, all you can think about is the eerie chorus. "Little shadow, to the night will you follow me?" Celia could relate to this song at least one of two ways, one, she could be referring to the "little shadow" as Matt, and that she is trying prove as a motherly figure by guiding him through the night. Secondly, (and the one that I personally believe the most) is when Celia is trying to escape Aztlán, she was abandoned by a coyote in the Ajo Mountains and ending up face to face with Farm Patrol. In such a desperate situation, with no family, "I hadn't heard from my family in years. Maybe they were all dead. I don't know." (Farmer 141) Celia seemed to have to rely on only herself to survive and push through the hardships that she was facing for her freedom and possibility for a more promising future. Since Celia is leaving behind her entire past, her family and home village, (though she does not think highly of Aztlán) she has only her own shadow to follow her and keep her company; which is a very lonely thing to think about. In the acoustic version of Little Shadow there is an ensemble of upbeat cellos, violas and piano replacing guitars and drum kits, which I believe Celia would find quite appealing. 

Image from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/It's_Blitz!

8. Breathe Me - Sia (Tintin)
In The House of the Scorpion it is often communicated how much Matt needs Celia and how much he misses her whenever she is absent or gone and how often he worries about if she is thinking about him. However, I've only recently considered the possibility of Celia needing Matt's presence more than he needs hers. Not only out of fear for mistreating El Patron's precious clone, but because she has become attached to the beast she was only loaned. From the start of the novel it seemed as if Celia was trying to prevent from any attachment between her and Matt, perhaps it was because she was worried of what others might think of them if she considered Matt her son and he considered her his mother. There is evidence of her efforts to prevent any attachment from happening which are most evident in the beginning of the novel, for example: "'Don't call me Mamá' snapped Celia." (Farmer 11) As the novel progresses, Matt and Celia's family-like bond becomes stronger and stronger. Celia desires to protect and provide for Matt even though they aren't related or even remotely on socially similar levels. Their combined forces create for an incredible mother-son relationship, where each of them feed off one another, they are both needy and crave for a past that isn't shadowed by an empty family. That's when the lyrics of Breathe Me come into play.

"Be my friend
Hold me, wrap me up
Unfold me
I am small
And needy
Warm me up
And breathe me"

Needless to say these lyrics certainly fit the relationship between Celia and Matt quite well and communicate both of their lonesome feelings. Again, I think Celia would also enjoy this track due to its very quiet and mellow sound, it is almost sung completely acapella.

Image from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colour_the_Small_One

9. Beautiful Boy - John Lennon (Emily)
This song was written for John Lennon’s son, Sean. This caught my attention because such lyrics like
“Before you go to sleep
Say a little prayer
Every day in every way
It's getting better and better”, remind me of how Celia is a religious person and keeps a Virgin of Guadalupe beside Matt’s bed for protection. The last 2 lines of that verse also remind me of how Celia is always trying to keep Matt calm and protect him from being abused by other people because of him being a clone, as well as trying to keep him from his true purpose of being a clone. Celia sees Matt like a son and loves him to death, and this song really expresses that feeling of undying love for your child as well. This is the kind of song that I imagine when Matt was very young, Celia sung this song to Matt before he went to sleep.

10. Boats & Birds - Gregory & the Hawk (Tintin)
The final playlist-closing track is Boats & Birds, a song I would find fitting for Celia since it has such a calming feel in the way that the artist sings the song. Celia would especially enjoy this song for its relevant lyrics towards Celia's life; how she is always constantly putting Matt's safety and concerns before her own. For example, when Celia finds Matt in the Alacrán Estate she says: "'Are you too weak to stand?' Celia cried suddenly. 'Oh, my God! Have they broken your legs? At least say something. They haven't torn out your tongue?" she began to wail like La Llorona." (Farmer 48) After travelling a great distance to see Matt, she still couldn't help but ask how he was, without a single complaint of her own and without admonishing Matt for disobeying her. Celia's life is dedicated to allow El Patron's clone to have the most "normal" and positive childhood possible, even if that means putting her own personal happiness and goals behind herself for Matt's sake. This song's first verse communicates selflessness and dedication, Celia is simply the spotlight, and Matt is the performer, she literally lives to let him shine.

"If you be my star
I'll be your sky
you can hide underneath me and come out at night
when I turn jet black and you show off your light
I live to let you shine
I live to let you shine"

Image from: http://gregoryandthehawk.bandcamp.com/album/the-boats-and-birds-ep

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