(Late) Procrastination Destination: Francis and the Lights Dance with Chance

Grades for graduation candidates are due Monday at noon, so hopefully at least those folks graduating are no longer procrastinating on school work. Whether or not you’re still working, this short and sweet procrastination destination is for you, with some nice dancing, reassurance that you’ll figure things out whether or not you graduate, and a reminder that “It’s Alright 2 Cry.”

On Thursday, Francis and the Lights released a video collaboration with Chance the Rapper of the song “May I Have This Dance.” In it, Chance is joined on the dance floor by Francis Farewell Starlite, the band’s only permanent member, and a former Wesleyan student. Francis began at Wes in 1999 before dropping out in 2002 and traveling around the country on a train, at which point he decided to commit to being a musician. Two of the band’s other regular members are also Wes alums: Rene Solomon ’07 and Jake Rabinbach ’04.

Francis and the Lights played at Wes when they were students and probably at Electic in 2007, 2008, and 2009. Apparently, “their first show was a performance of the posthumous Otis Redding record “The Immortal Otis Redding” in its entirety.”

Francis Farewell Starlite (now his legal name) sounds like a pretty weird dude, who credits the Elements of Style handbook as “the beginning of everything that I care about,” and apparently reads it every night. He’s very into brevity and minimalism, which I am trying to emulate as I finish my final paper of my undergraduate career. Like many of us, he thinks that “everything [he has] done has been a failure.”

“May I Have This Dance” doesn’t feel like a failure, however; at the very least, it’s a charming one. If Chance and Francis’ dancing isn’t enough of a pick-me-up, try “It’s Alrite 2 Cry,” a collaboration with Kool A.D. (Victor Vazquez ’06), or the solo “It’s Alright 2 Cry,” which feels like a pretty good goodbye song.


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