Sampled from the Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory film with Gene Wilder. Willy Wonka says this to the children as they are tasting the wallpaper, just before they enter the room where Fizzy Lifting Drinks are made. Such a beautiful film... it's an acid trip for kids and adults.

"...and we are the dreamers of dreams."

This sample was used to great effect in Aphex Twin's "We Are the Music Makers" from Selected Ambient Works 85-92. In fact, it was the only vocal on that landmark album.

I'm pretty sure that this quote originally comes from the poem "Ode" by Arthur O'Shaughnessy:


Ode

We are the music-makers,
And we are the dreamers of dreams,
Wandering by lone sea-breakers,
And sitting by desolate streams.
World-losers and world-forsakers,
Upon whom the pale moon gleams;
Yet we are the movers and shakers,
Of the world forever, it seems.

With wonderful deathless ditties
We build up the world's great cities,
And out of a fabulous story
We fashion an empire's glory:
One man with a dream, at pleasure,
Shall go forth and conquer a crown;
And three with a new song's measure
Can trample an empire down.

We, in the ages lying
In the buried past of the earth,
Built Ninevah with our sighing,
And Babel itself with our mirth;
And o'erthrew them with prophesying
To the old of the new world's worth;
For each age is a dream that is dying,
Or one that is coming to birth.


This poem is obviously written as an address from the author to the reader, but it seems he is speaking specifically to the artists who are reading it. It makes me feel good.

...and what are the computer geeks who sit here and node? who are the ones exploring the strange capabilities of this new electric media in front of them? who is it who dreams of the future, living in the age of dying mechanization and exponentially growing electronics? who uses their computer to communicate globally and write music and make graphics and crazy databases?

yes. they are the artists.
we are the music makers.
And themusic we make is the strange interweaving, the weird interconnections, the relations inbetween all the things that we post. It's not so much in space, as in time we compose; not so much in words, or music, or art that we compose--though these elements of it.

Leave trails of ourselves throughout this cyber world--this place that is no place--to paraphrase William Gibson, we are our own spoor, our own flotsam and jetsam, ready to sing to the "ear" of those who will, those who can, listen, and hear.

I hear it as The Whole of Harmonium. How do you hear it?

A historical back ground about the phrase we are the music makers. In Arthur O'Shaughnessy's (1844–1881) poem and in particular the introduction in his ode to The Music Makers, he takes a look a group of cotemporaries in a personal and timeless reflection on the Pre Raphaelite Brotherhood's outlook and their emphasis on the continuity of the artist's place in history.

The poets of Pre Raphaelite Brotherhood are sometimes referred to as Pre-Raphaelites. Dante Gabriel Rossetti was a both a poet as well as a painter and the Pre Raphaelite crowd was the place to be. This group as a general rule also tended to be interested in poetry. Formed in London in 1848 by Rossetti it's members consisted of painters by the likes of William Holman Hunt and John Millais. It's purpose was as the name implies to restore to the art of painting the attention to detail that was found in Italian art before Raphael. Rossetti eventually became the center of a group of poets that included Coventry Patmore, William Morris, Rossetti's sister, Christina, Swinburne, and Austin Dobson. One of the last to drift into this group was a retiring herpetologist from the British Museum named Arthur O'Shaughnessy.

The motif of the poem, writes the Musical Times, "is the idea that the poets - the music makers and dreamers - are really the creators and inspirers of men and their deeds, and the true makers of history and human societies. Their dreams and their visions are the fore-shadowings of what the rest of mankind are predestined to work out in endless conflict: today is a realization of the dream of the generations past; tomorrow will bring into being the dream of today."

Composed sometime in 1870s The Music Makers is not only O'Shaughnessy's best, but is, because of its perfect blending of music and message, one of the immortal classics of verse. Always delicate in health, his hopes were dashed by periods of illness and an early death in London in 1881. O'Shaughnessy's work created a transition of time and place between the past loving Pre Raphaelites, whose influence began to decline in the 1870s, and the more future looking Aesthetic movement which reached its zenith in the late 1800s; and continues to define emphasis in artistic and poetic attitudes today.

Sources:

O'Shaughnessy, Arthur William Edgar:
http://www.infoplease.com/ce6/people/A0836974.html

The Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood:
www.speel.demon.co.uk/other/prb.htm

O'Shaughnessy's poem was (first?) set to music for contralto, choir and strings, by Edward Elgar in 1912. This piece of Edwardian proto-post-modernism features numerous quotes from the composer's own earlier works (including the Enigma Variations and the Violin Concerto, as well as Rule Brittania and God Save the King.

I don't know whether Aphex Twin sampled the Elgar, but they clearly should have done.

Log in or registerto write something here or to contact authors.