Sunday, June 07, 2015

30 Day Song Challenge, Day 7: A Song You Never Tire of Hearing

I had some major blog snafus this past week, so I'm waaay behind on the 30 Day Song Challenge!  What that means for you, readers, is that the entries are going to be considerably briefer for the next several days while I catch up.

Today's prompt was easy for me.  I'm choosing Sam Cooke's "A Change Is Gonna Come," which is a song that I hear very often and so have had plenty of opportunity to tire of hearing. I never have tired of it, though. The track opens with a string sequence,that swells up to a crescendo and broadcasts its intention to tell you something epic and true from the very start.  When Cooke comes in with his opening line-- I was booooorn by the river-- he confirms that, yes, this is an epic story.  And like all epics, it begins with a creation account.

This song really does have everything.  Metaphorical conjunctions of man and Nature (Just like that river, I've been running ever since), cosmological and theological speculations (It's been too hard living, but I'm afraid to die, cause I don't know what's up there beyond the sky), tragedy (I say "brother, help me please" but he winds up knocking me back down on my knees) and, most importantly, prophecy (A change is gonna come, oh yes it will).  Put all that in the voice of Sam Cooke, which combines tenderness and strength in a way that is truly divine, and there's no wondering why "A Change Is Gonna Come" became the song of a people struggling to realize its prophecy.


This song is nothing short of the soul-music version of Homer.

Here it is:




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