Tuesday Tunes

I’ve recently seen a growing number of bloggers and Facebook friends posting under the banner of ‘Music Monday.’ As is often the case I didn’t quite get my act together to start doing this yesterday so I thought I’d do a little rebranding to suit my tardiness. Anyway, what’s a day, between friends? Somehow, though, I doubt that ‘Tuesday Tunes’ is a remotely original tagline: I haven’t been on Twitter today but I expect I’d find loads on there!

As anyone who has viewed my blog will not take long to realise, music is very important to me, and to countless others. In these strange, scary and unimaginable times in which we find ourselves, music is a common bond between us: if you don’t believe that, just take a look at the videos of Italians joining together in song from their balconies, or the Spanish police roaring to a halt in an empty street during lockdown, and serenading the people who live there. Music can uplift our spirits when we need it most, and I’m going to begin my ‘Tuesday Tunes’ by sharing a couple of songs which I think speak to us at all times, but especially now.

I shared the first of these on my Take It Easy Facebook page a couple of days ago, but think it deserves a much wider audience (hint: new sign ups to the page are always welcome, follow the link in the right hand column). Jackson Browne has been a favourite artist of mine ever since his first album, all the way back in 1972. The track I shared is from his third album (and my favourite of his). It is a song about mankind’s stupidity and arrogance in its belief in its superiority, and how the true spirit of ourselves and nature can rise above that. That sounds pretentious, as I write it, but it is anything but that: couched in one of Jackson’s beautiful tunes, the song has always spoken to me, and is particularly meaningful as a comment on how we need to come together to defeat the Covid-19 virus. Take a listen and you’ll see what I mean – I saw him play this live some years ago, and it was one of those ‘hairs on the back of the neck’ moments. I still get something in my eye every time I hear this:

The second song I want to share today is from an English folk-rock band that I’d guess most of you haven’t heard of before: Merry Hell. They share with Jackson Browne a strong sense of social conscience, and many of their songs are rousing and uplifting calls to our better nature. I believe this one is especially relevant to us all, now more than ever – the band’s albums are great, but this live performance really gives the song its full power:

We do need each other now. Our Prime Minister finally did last night what he should have done weeks ago, and put the country in lockdown to try to prevent the spread of the virus. Yet still this morning there are pictures in the media of people crammed into the carriages of London Underground trains. I doubt that they are all key workers, but the stupidity and arrogance of those who aren’t beggars belief. They, and we, could learn a lesson from these two songs. It is hard not to write a downbeat post in our current times, and this is very much intended to be a positive message, via the medium of music. Take care, be and stay safe, and be uplifted by the beauties of life which will long outlast the crisis. And keep remembering:

We need each other now.

13 thoughts on “Tuesday Tunes

  1. Miriam March 29, 2020 / 12:03 pm

    Wonderful post Clive and I totally agree with you about the power of music. In fact just tonight, whilst listening to a cranked up Phil Collins after dinner, I said the same thing to my husband. Stay safe and well.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Clive March 29, 2020 / 12:07 pm

      Thanks Miriam, glad you agree! Another comment suggested that I make this a regular feature and I think I will, at least for the duration of the current crisis. After that, we’ll see! You be safe and well too 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      • Miriam March 29, 2020 / 12:09 pm

        I think that’s a great idea. Music is a real healer. Thanks Clive. xx

        Liked by 1 person

  2. petespringerauthor March 25, 2020 / 4:19 am

    How is this for a coincidence, Clive? Jackson Browne just tested positive for coronavirus. Remind me not to get a mention from you. 😎

    Liked by 1 person

    • Clive March 25, 2020 / 8:47 am

      Wow! I hope he and everyone else with it will be alright. A most unfortunate coincidence – that’s all, I don’t have magic powers!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. petespringerauthor March 24, 2020 / 8:06 pm

    Perhaps I’ve been living under a rock, but I’ve never heard of Merry Hell until today. The message of needing each other is certainly appropriate for the times. I miss sitting down to have a beer with a buddy or hugging one of my friends as we greet or say goodbye to one another. It’s easy to take for granted human interaction until we suddenly don’t have it.

    On the other hand, I’ve always been a big fan of Jackson Browne. I can’t begin to tell you how many times I’ve listened to Somebody’s Baby. Be well, Clive.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Clive March 24, 2020 / 8:23 pm

      I think you can easily be forgiven for that, Pete. They are an English band, based in the North West, and do a lot of shows locally. Over the past couple of years they have broken into the wider folk festival circuit, but I don’t think they’re well known outside England. They mostly write their own songs, and from what I’ve seen of their live shows they’re very engaging. Some nice humour in their original videos too – try the Baker’s Daughter if you want to see more.

      Hopefully this whole thing will be over before we all get too stir crazy – though probably not as quickly as your and our Government would like!

      As I said in the piece I’ve had the great good fortune to see Jackson Browne play live, and have been a fan throughout his whole career. You stay safe and well too 👍


    • Clive March 24, 2020 / 6:51 pm

      Thanks, Thom. I may well do that, at least for the duration of the crisis. We could all do with some uplifting music just now. You stay well too 👍

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thom Hickey March 24, 2020 / 8:18 pm

        Thanks. Should have said how much I love christy Moore version of Deluge.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Clive March 24, 2020 / 8:25 pm

        Christy does make songs his own, doesn’t he! There’s a rather good live version with the two JBs as well – Jackson Browne and Joan Baez. I saw him do it with David Lindley and a small band – magical!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Darlene March 24, 2020 / 12:02 pm

    Music is a great healer. Thanks so much. Yes, we all need each other now.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Clive March 24, 2020 / 12:05 pm

      Thanks, Darlene. I felt it needed to be said. Stay safe 👍

      Liked by 1 person

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