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Saturday, June 19, 2021

Song Writing from the Heart

Gut-Wrenching: causing mental or emotional anguish

To review the definition of “gut-wrenching” you can read it from a dictionary, or listen to these folk songs.



I had never heard of Rose Cousins until clicking around for different versions of this haunting folk song from my youth. It’s so incredibly touching to see how an artist (in this case Gordon Lightfoot) has had such a profound influence on other musicians and music lovers over the course of history and geography.

This song has always been great, but it's never sounded better. She skips the strings arrangement in Lightfoot's original, which I'm sure he would have, too, but was probably compelled to include by some evil record company.

"If You Could Read My Mind" Gordon Lightfoot

If you could read my mind, love
What a tale my thoughts could tell
Just like an old-time movie
'Bout a ghost from a wishin' well
In a castle dark or a fortress strong
With chains upon my feet
You know that ghost is me
And I will never be set free
As long as I'm a ghost that you can't see

If I could read your mind, love
What a tale your thoughts could tell
Just like a paperback novel
The kind the drugstores sell
When you reach the part where the heartaches come
The hero would be me
But heroes often fail
And you won't read that book again
Because the ending's just too hard to take

I'd walk away like a movie star
Who gets burned in a three-way script
Enter number two
A movie queen to play the scene
Of bringing all the good things out in me
But for now love, let's be real
I never thought I could act this way
And I've got to say that I just don't get it
I don't know where we went wrong
But the feeling's gone and I just can't get it back

If you could read my mind, love
What a tale my thoughts could tell
Just like an old-time movie
'Bout a ghost from a wishin' well
In a castle dark or a fortress strong
With chains upon my feet
But stories always end
And if you read between the lines
You'll know that I'm just tryin' to understand
The feelings that you lack
I never thought I could feel this way
And I've got to say that I just don't get it
I don't know where we went wrong
But the feeling's gone and I just can't get it back



It would be hard to find a song with more pain and anguish than this.

Operator by Jim Croce

Operator
Oh, could you help me place this call?
You see the number on the matchbook
Is old and faded

She's livin' in L. A
With my best old ex-friend Ray
A guy she said she knew well
And sometimes hated

Isn't that the way they say it goes?
But let's forget all that
And give me the number if you can find it
So I can call just to tell 'em
I'm fine and to show I've overcome the blow
I've learned to take it well
I only wish my words could just convince myself
That it just wasn't real
But that's not the way it feels

Oh. Could you help me place this call?
'Cause I can't read the number
That you just gave me

There's something in my eyes
You know it happens every time
I think about the love
That I thought would save me

Isn't that the way they say it goes?
But let's forget all that
And give me the number if you can find it
So I can call just to tell 'em
I'm fine and to show I've overcome the blow
I've learned to take it well
I only wish my words could just convince myself
That it just wasn't real
But that's not the way it feels

No, no, no, no
That's not the way it feels

Oh, let's forget about this call
There's no one there I really wanted to talk to
Thank you for your time
Oh, you've been so much more than kind
You can keep the dime

Isn't that the way they say it goes?
But let's forget all that
And give me the number if you can find it
So I can call just to tell 'em
I'm fine and to show I've overcome the blow
I've learned to take it well
I only wish my words could just convince myself
That it just wasn't real
But that's not the way it feels


Joni Mitchell Both Sides Now 

Leave it to Joni Michell to remake her own song a generation later and make it even more amazing. The two version bookend her life, at least at the time of the recording, both are breathlessly simple in their own way.

Spinner Magazine said of Canadian singer-songwriter and pianist Laila Biali that she melds “traditional jazz with contemporary pop so effortlessly that neither style seems out of place on the same record.” Nor on the same song. This is a breathless joining of voice and piano.

Rows and flows of angel hair
And ice cream castles in the air
And feather canyons everywhere
Looked at clouds that way

But now they only block the sun
They rain and they snow on everyone
So many things I would have done
But clouds got in my way

I've looked at clouds from both sides now
From up and down and still somehow
It's cloud illusions I recall
I really don't know clouds at all

Moons and Junes and Ferris wheels
The dizzy dancing way that you feel
As every fairy tale comes real
I've looked at love that way

But now it's just another show
And you leave 'em laughing when you go
And if you care, don't let them know
Don't give yourself away

I've looked at love from both sides now
From give and take and still somehow
It's love's illusions that I recall
I really don't know love
Really don't know love at all

Tears and fears and feeling proud
To say, "I love you" right out loud
Dreams and schemes and circus crowds
I've looked at life that way

Oh, but now old friends they're acting strange
And they shake their heads and they tell me that I've changed
Well something's lost, but something's gained
In living every day

I've looked at life from both sides now
From win and lose and still somehow
It's life's illusions I recall
I really don't know life at all

It's life's illusions that I recall
I really don't know life
I really don't know life at all

 

 

While in the rabbit hole of YouTube, I was delighted to find this wonderful song by a Spanish artist. Never heard of her. Where has she been all my life?

Rita Payés - Nunca vas a comprender

Nunca vas a comprender
Que yo te quise
Nunca vas a comprender
Cómo lo hice

Tú me hablabas del amor
De eso tan bello
Te faltó por demostrar
Que eras capaz de vivir aquello

Pero no
Te olvides por favor que
Sigo aquí ya no quiero sufrir más por ti
Mi amor

Con el tiempo decidí
Que es un recuerdo
Todo aquello que viví
Y me mató por dentro

Nunca vas a comprender
Que yo te quise
Nunca vas a comprender
Cómo lo hic
е

Tú me hablabas del amor
De
еso tan bello
Te faltó por demostrar
Que eras capaz de vivir aquello

Pero no
Te olvides por favor
Que sigo aquí ya no quiero sufrir más por ti
Mi amor

Con el tiempo decidí
Que es un recuerdo
Todo aquello que viví
Y me mató por dentro

1 comment:

If you can't say something nice, say it here.