It's easy to bogged down with the cares of life, where's the next payment for this that or the other going to come from. But you can't hold on to anything, and so a wise old pal said "You can't take it with you, my friend". So when that little glimpse of sunshine peeks out from the cloud, smile, and thank God you're alive. Maybe even sing a wee song to yourself :-)
I have always had a love of music. My tastes stretch from decades before I was born, right up to the current hit. However, you cant possibly hear everything, know everything, like everything. Its like trying to hold a handful of sand, in the middle is the solid mass, firm, safe, and yet grains constantly escape your attention, eluding you, slipping away through your fingers. However, recently my daughter started performing music, joining me in impromptu and arranged gatherings, and bringing to me new songs, joyous love for names and melodies that have escaped me like grains of sand. And when she comes to me with a song "Dad, have you heard this song by John Lennon, its amazing", I smile, knowingly, and pretend I don't
I'm amazed at how many traditional songs I know, yet know very little about the background about the song. Of course I know most of the songs are about battles won & lost, or the most common subject is Bonnie Prince Charlie. However, I've recently read a few Nigel Tranter novels, and suddenly some stories behind the songs have been brought to life. For instance the opening line of 'Bonnie Lass of Fyvie - There once was a troop of Irish dragoons' is about the Irish soldiers who fought side by side with the Montrose army fighting in the Scottish civil war of 1644 against the English government forces. Even more amazing is that there is an American version of the very same song sung at the Battle of Independence in 1812. Yet the author is unknown, but even stars like Joan Baez, Bob Dylan, Simon & Garfunkel and the Grateful Dead have graced us with their versions. Maybe this will be my opening song at the Dunbar Music Festival. Aye these songs will stay with us forever, and maybe the stories behind them will never be lost either....
For those of you who are familiar with the Beatles you'll know this is the opening line to 'Got To Get You Into My Life', a brilliant song from the Lennon/McCarntney partnership. Recently I've been inspired by the formal and informal little 'partnerships' that life creates. Of course I have the outstanding support & love from my nearest & dearest ones. But others give their time unselfishly to support others, including myself, in listening and playing music on their radio shows and podcasts all over the world. And I was thinking that in my own little way I'm embedding a little bit of myself in my songs in the pursuit of reaching out to others, perhaps inspiring them or touching their heart and souls in some way. So take a ride, you don't know what you might find there....I've gotta get you into my life
Have you ever seen that TV program 'Touch'? Sometimes I wonder how the universe works. Last week I messaged a friend of a friend of a friend about maybe playing one of my songs on her radio show, to my surprise she's heard the song already on Irish radio, and she's also a very distant cousin... not only that she's played music with some of my obscures connections, has a similar background, and so much in common.....that whole conversation was meant to be, pre-destined, in the stars
Come one, you know this one, sing along... In an introspective moment I've thought about all of the songs I heard as I grew up, to the songs that I've sang in pubs and clubs.. I owe a lot to my influences and I'm not ashamed to say that I like both kinds of music, country and western!.. Anyway a nice wee work in progress is a tribute to the Kings & Queens of Country... Cline, Cash, Parton, Kristofferson, Gayle, Nelson... the list goes on...
Johnny was my father, And Patsy was my mom, Kris and Willie were my brothers, From the songs that I have sung, Dolly and Loretta, Were my sisters close to me, My life was made by music, And their words my history
A massive thanks to everyone who came along and supported John & Mary, myself, and Blu Velvet. A brilliant night, a lovely balance of great covers and original material. And a huge thanks to Dave Wharton & Sandy Rosie for once again providing the sound and organising the night. My set list for the night was:
YOU'RE THE FOOL, LADY OF THE ROAD, HEART ON A STRING, YOU KNOW YOU, CONSIDER THE IMPOSSIBLE, YOU'RE MAKING IT EASY, SWEET LASSIE BY THE SHORE, YOU IN MY ARMS, JUST ONE MORE DRINK
Sometimes you've got this wee gem of a song that needs a little bit of attention. Well I finally got round to recording this one, despite me writing it a few months ago. I had a gig at a local music club, and in the week leading up to the gig I was busy arranging my 50min spot. I just needed that extra wee song, and instantly this came to me, a gorgeous wee song written in 15 minutes. Whether you measure your love in nights, days, or moments, don't ever stop loving.
Sometimes life is hard. Sometimes it's raining in your heart. Sometimes there ain't no sunshine when you're gone. Yep, life is hard. But you, you're making it easy.
Well I finally did it... been toying with the idea of buying a new instrument, and finally got round to buying a resonator guitar... they look & sound cool, and I've bought a vintage styled instrument so it would look too out of place with the old guy thats playing it... Now only to get some slide technique, some picking technique, and some altered tunings sorted... Simples!