RIP Mark Linkous
This song is more for Dutch speaking persons, but I’ll give you the translation in English which I based on this one:
I moved a stone
In a river on earth
The water flows different there
One cannot stop
The stream of a river
Water always finds
Its way around
Maybe, once filled
By snow and rain
The river takes
our shingles with it
To let it then rest
Worn out smoothly and roundly
In the shelter of the sea
I moved a stone
In a river on earth
Now I know that
I will never be forgotten
I delivered the proof
Of my existence
By moving that one stone
The stream will never
Move the same way again……
Hey … I’ll be watching the last episodes of Six Feet Under tonight. Meanwhile I found that this song is about death… feeding the tree, that’s the nicest expression I’ve ever heard of for being buried. Just love it. See you later.
Today Jacques Brel has been dead for 30 years. If there’s any Belgian that should be famous I think it should be him.
A lot of his songs could be considered appropriate to play on a funeral. Ne Me Quitte Pas could be played as well I guess, even though it’s more of a love song. Le Chanson Des Vieux Amants would be so beautiful if played for a passed away loved one.
While researching this blog post a bit I stumbled upon this text on google book search which takes a complete chapter on how Jacques Brel and George Brassens approach death in their songs. It’s probably an interesting essay but some chapters are missing online.
The choice today however goes to Le Moribond, which I like because of its sarcasm. If you’re a native English speaker you should make sure to read the original lyrics in translation and not just go with the English version that was done by Terry Jacks. There is a clip with English subtitles on dailymotion but I’ll go with the one with Dutch subtitles that I consider to be of better quality.
The list of songs that I can blog about is growing steadily so I don’t think this is going to stop anytime soon. I feel there are various ways I could broaden the subject because although “funeral songs” sounds limiting I keep getting ideas about what I could be blogging about in the larger framework of it.
The other day I was at a music course and the professor was explaining that this year we would study four different requiems. Now this happened this week and I started this blog what, last month? It always looks like ideas are up in the air like that, for people to be plucked away and do something with it. Or maybe it is just so that once you are focusing on things you start becoming more receptive to things that have a relation to your topic. Whatever it is, I’m starting to enjoy thinking about this all.
Of course I could be going through my music collection and start finding all songs that you could play on a funeral but if I’d do that too quickly I’d become totally depressed and I’d commit suicide and that would be the end of this blog. I don’t want that, and I hope you don’t want that either.
So the frequency of song posting could be a bit on the low side. It doesn’t matter to me. I probably don’t have any readers (yet?) anyway, so probably nobody is waiting.
In the mean time I’ve been enjoying Six Feet Under. It’s a television series about a family of undertakers but with a big sense of humor and wonderfully intelligent characters. I love the nutty mother staring at her pan in the kitchen, I love the daughter in her messed up teenager world, I love the girlfriend of Nathan who looks like she’s a femme fatale but might be for real, I love the way each episode starts with a death of a random person, I love the puerto rican guy that stuffs all the dead bodies. It’s such a wonderful show! I downloaded the first series, but I am so going to buy the DVD box when I’m through with them.
And then the fact that the passed away father had a secret life when he still was alive! Just a bit like this blog, really, nobody in my surroundings knows anything about this either. I intend to keep it like that for a while… it makes me feel freer in writing.
In the mean time, thanks for reading and … keep living!
They played this song on the radio the other day while I was driving to work. Even though I’ve heard this song too much already I wouldn’t mind getting this played one more time on my funeral. Gabriel, it turns out, is sometimes regarded as the angel of death and is the messenger of God.
From reading this Wikipedia page I learned that he is also known in the Islamic religion. Now I knew there were similarities between religions but that they shared some of the same angels is a new fact to me.
I was just on my bicycle when this song all of a sudden popped up in my head. I thought it might have been early John Hiatt, but I soon knew it was Tom Waits. His voice still sounded so smooth in those days.
Stars beginning to fade, and I lead the parade
Just a-wishing I’d stayed a little longer
Let’s get started right away. The original Bee Gees song is brilliant so that one is allowed too, but this cover is even better. It’s by one of my all time favorite bands called Low, and it’s from their collection of B-sides and rarities called “A Lifetime Of Temporary Relief”.
You’d almost think they recorded most of these songs for their funeral, but then again Low has always made the more ecclesiastical kind of music and has set some of their performances in churches.
I’m still trying to figure out how to operate this damn thing here so you can listen to the songs from this website, so for now you’ll have to just go to the hype machine and take a listen there, or download the song from this URL:
When I die other people have to decide which songs get played on my funeral. Of course they don’t have the musical taste I have, so they will fuck up and I don’t want that. Therefore, this blog. Any song here is allowed to be played on my funeral.
Because I don’t want people to think I’m planning my death or anything (which I am absolutely not – I plan to post songs on this blog for at leas a thousand years to come), I’ll post anonymously for a while. Maybe in the future I’ll come out into the open. We’ll see.