This is a musical blog, so I hope you have some time. Click on the links and enjoy some great music.
I’m a big Lyle Lovett fan. He’s a great song writer whose songs bend several musical genres: country, blues, gospel, rock. He often tours with his Large Band, a 16 piece Texas swing band (Lyle’s from Texas…That’s right, you’re not from Texas…). I’ve seen him perform with, and without, his Large Band in places big and small.
One of Lovett’s more recent works is It’s Not Big It’s Large. Though his songs aren’t about cancer survivors (as far as I know), there are a couple that just grab me by the heart. One is I Will Rise Up, and the chorus is…
And I will rise up, and I will rise up,
Though I be a dead man, I said yes and amen.
And I will stand tall, and I will stand tall,
Until I meet my end, until I meet my end.
Whenever I hear these words, I think about all the cancer survivors who are terminally ill, living day by day, doing their best to live with dignity and independence for as long as they can.
Another song is Don’t Cry a Tear For Me. Whether it’s about someone leaving a relationship, or dying, I don’t know, but when I hear it, all I can think about is my brother. Bart would want us to remember him by all the good times we had with him, and all the good things he did, not about what he went through before he died.
Warren Zevon died of lung cancer. His song My Shit’s Fucked Up is about his cancer experience, written in a way that only he could write it. I think he speaks for many of us, especially those us unafraid of using four letter words.
Zevon’s last album was The Wind, which was made when it was clear his lung cancer would soon kill him. He sang a version of Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door, which has a whole new depth when sung by someone who knows he’s dying.
The album ends with Keep Me in Your Heart. On an internet bulletin board, I’d communicated with a woman whose 21 year old son died after a battle with Hodgkin’s lymphoma. I posted the lyrics. She had them read at his funeral.
I’ll try to be more upbeat next blog.