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'With a brush and an eye full of light': Patti Smith's Spiritual Exploration

Patti Smith. Photo by Angelo Cricchi via PattiSmith.net.

Patti Smith. Photo by Angelo Cricchi via PattiSmith.net.

"Oh Lord let me die on the back of adventure/ With a brush and an eye full of light."

These lines from the 10-minute "Constantine’s Dream" sum up Banga — the latest album from musical iconoclast Patti Smith — even as they aptly describe the career of CBGB's Queen of Punk.

For the better part of four decades, Smith has been all about adventure. The brush is a symbol of her broad artistic canvas (she sees herself more a poet than a musician, as well as an author and photographer), and she’s ever in pursuit of what the best rock music always is interested in – light, truth and better world.

Smith's “Oh Lord” at the start of that line is no accident, it would appear. This album particularly is full of God and religious images. The song "Constantine's Dream" finds Smith on pilgrimage to Assisi, following in the footsteps of St. Francis.

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