Celebrate Each Day with a Song ~”Rain”

Today would have been John Lennon’s 77th birthday. Growing up in the 1960s, the most common names spoken in the household were John, Paul, George and Ringo. The Beatles are still innovative and spectacular as artists. How many bar bands go on to become brilliant trendsetters of a generation, influencing musicians for generations to come. John Lennon was greatly admired for his charm and sharp intelligence. He could be direct and often shook a few trees with his candid, insightful words in song or in interviews.

The majority of Lennon’s musical career reveals a man of keen sensitivity to his and our souls. He often showed us self-confidence, pride and self-doubt. Amazing that he could thrive as an artist with the pressure to perform and be always a little better than before.  I don’t think modern audiences understand how popular The Beatles were. Their strong work ethic and determination to be the best are some of the reasons for their success.

Listening to the works of Lennon and McCartney today, it is clear which artist was the majority writer on each song. “Rain” is a Lennon composition and perfect for this damp day in New England. Thank you John for putting your heart into everything you did. An artist, writer, actor, musician, poet, singer, peace activist and songwriter. Happy Birthday to an outstanding artist. Miss you still John.

From the B side of “Paperback Writer”, released on a 45 rpm in May 1966

Rain

If the rain comes they run and hide their heads
They might as well be dead
If the rain comes, if the rain comes

When the sun shines they slip into the shade
(when the sun shines down)
And sip their lemonade
(when the sun shines down)
When the sun shines, when the sun shines

Rain, I don’t mind
Shine, the weather’s fine

I can show you that when it starts to rain
(when the rain comes down)
Everything’s the same
(when the rain comes down)
I can show you, I can show you

Rain, I don’t mind
Shine, the weather’s fine

Can you hear me, that when it rains and shines
(when it rains and shines)
It’s just a state of mind?
(when it rains and shines)
Can you hear me, can you hear me?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Celebrate Each Day with a Song ~ “Sailing Down This Golden River”

The digital age allows for bits and pieces of things remembered to take form. A fond memory from days gone by was brought together with a search on You Tube.

Arlo Guthrie+Muppets Show+I was not far from home.

Another fan of this televised performance video recorded the 1979 broadcast and posted it on You Tube to enjoy. “This Golden River” by Pete Seeger and performed by Arlo Guthrie is a treasured moment in song. Guthrie’s home base is in the Berkshires of Massachusetts. He is the son of American folk singer and songwriter Woody Guthrie. Arlo continues his support of live acoustic folk music presenting the Guthrie Center Troubadour Series, at the Old Trinity Chruch in Great Barrington, MA. He is an accomplished singer, songwriter, storyteller and performer with both commercial and critical success.

When I watch this video, it feels as if I have connected with an old friend. There’s something in his presence that brings comfort and joy. The lyrics have classic Seeger clarity and attention to that which is all around us. He often gave ordinary activities and things a voice. The melody, vocals and instrumentation make this song beautiful.

“This Golden River”

Words and music by Pete Seeger

Sailng down my golden river
Sun and water all my own
Yet I was never alone

Sun and water, old life givers
I’ll have them where ere I roam
And I was not far from home

Sunlight glancing on the water
Life and death are all my own
Yet I was never alone

Life for all my sons and daughters
Golden sparkles in the foam
And I was not far from home

Sailing down this winding highway
Travelers from near and far
And I was never alone

Exploring all the little byways
Sighting all the distant stars
And I was not far from home

Sailing down my golden river
Sun and water all my own
Yet I was never alone

Sun and water, old life givers
I’ll have them where ere I roam
And I was not far from home
Yet I was never alone
And I was not far from home

Celebrate Each Day with a Song ~ Southern Cross

Celebrate the magnificence of the seas. How long ago, how many lifetimes passed before our ancestors evolved out of the waters and learned to navigate on land. Mariners have taken to the sea in rafts, barques and sloops moved by the winds and tides to destinations far beyond the horizon. How small we are out there and outrageously brave to ride the waves and steer by the stars. It must be the call of the old self that draws us to sail. We may have evolved into a land species, but never lost the mesmerizing love of being at sea.This song, recorded by Steven Stills and Graham Nash in 1982 captures the glory of the sea in it’s melody. The lyrics tell the adventures of Music and crew as she sails through the southern seas. Life is turbulent for the sailor, love has come, love is lost. Solace is found in star light.

Crosby, Stills, and Nash are so fine and rare a musical group. It’s easy to feel Stills enchantment in his voice. What flows through them is the kiss and hiss of surf. Southern Cross rolls with the lightest acoustic instrumentation. The chiming guitars are the wave crests. The harmonies are mellow, comforting and marvelous. Why is it when I hear their songs, I feel at home?

A song that celebrates the human effort to realize we are a part of it all, “Cause the truth you might be runnin’ from is so small, But it’s as big as the promise, the promise of a comin’ day”

Hail the great seas, the great Crux, and the greatness of Crosby, Stills, Nash (and Young).

The Southern Cross

Got out of town on a boat goin’ to Southern Islands
Sailing a reach before a followin’ sea
She was makin’ for the trades on the outside
And the downhill run to Papeete

Off the wind on this heading lie the Marquesas
We got eighty feet of the waterline nicely making way
In a noisy bar in Avalon I tried to call you
But on a midnight watch I realized why twice you ran away

Think about
Think about how many times I have fallen
Spirits are using me, larger voices callin’
What Heaven brought you and me cannot be forgotten
Around the world (I have been around the world)
Lookin’ (lookin’ for that woman girl)
Who knows she knows (who knows love can endure)
And you know it will

When you see the Southern Cross for the first time
You understand now why you came this way
‘Cause the truth you might be runnin’ from is so small
But it’s as big as the promise, the promise of a comin’ day

So I’m sailing for tomorrow my dreams are a-dyin’
And my love is an anchor tied to you (tied with a silver chain)
I have my ship and all her flags are a-flyin’
She is all that I have left and music is her name

Think about
Think about how many times I have fallen
Spirits are using me, larger voices callin’
What Heaven brought you and me cannot be forgotten
I have been around the world (I have been around the world)
Lookin’ (lookin’ for that woman girl)
(Who knows love can endure)
And you know it will
And you know it will

So we cheated and we lied and we tested
And we never failed to fail it was the easiest thing to do
You will survive being bested
Somebody fine will come along make me forget about loving you
And the southern cross

Songwriters: Michael Curtis / Richard Curtis / Stephen Stills
Southern Cross lyrics © Music Sales Corporation

Celebrating Each Day with a Song ~ Catch the Wind

Music is sacred when voices and instruments blend with perfect pitch and harmony. The mind is such a complex and riveting place, generating new thoughts, fears and ambitions by the second. How it loves to lead. Music, it is in music that the spirit asserts its forlorn self. The soul rises to carry us away from the darkest hours.

The sweetest sound ever heard may well be a performance by Joan Baez and her sister Mimi Farina, singing Donovan’s “Catch the Wind”. Hail the grace of women and the simplicity of pure, beautiful music.

“Catch the Wind”

In the chilly hours and minutes
Of uncertainty
I want to be
In the warm hold of your loving mind.
To feel you all around me
And to take your hand
Along the sand,
Ah, but I may as well try and catch the wind.

When sundown pales the sky
I want to hide a while
Behind your smile,
And everywhere I’d look, your eyes I’d find.
For me to love you now
Would be the sweetest thing,
‘T would make me sing,
Ah, but I may as well try and catch the wind.

Diddy di dee dee diddy diddy,
Diddy diddy diddy dee dee dee.