I just discovered this great challenge.
It really caught my attention for a few reasons.
- I love music, especially lyrics. I actually USE them in my life, especially in my work.
- I love that a Mom in Utah takes her children to live music concerts!
- I love that the song she chose for today is by Midnight Oil, and that my husband’s band of many years plays it regularly!
- I am surrounded by live music in my personal life (partner, son, grandson, daughter-in-law, and many friends) and now my 2 grandsons (10 and 13) live with me so I really want to avoid that generation gap trap about music. I do not ever want to judge today’s music by my old standards.
Helen’s specific challenge today was to share the lyrics from a song at one of your very first live concerts. I wrote her and said that I could not actually remember if it was James Brown (with Fontella Bass “Rescue Me”) or Peter, Paul and Mary. Talk about opposites. If I had photos from those early concerts they would be perfect for this week’s WordPress Photo Challenge theme-“Opposites”.
But the more I thought about it the more I realized the concert that really got to me back then was a Simon and Garfunkel show.
Recently my son, with whom I have always been in musical sync, sat me down and made me listen to a song on his elaborate beyond my understanding, sound and visual system.
Coincidentally, it was the following song.
The Sound Of Silence (3:08)
P. Simon, 1964
Hello darkness, my old friend
I’ve come to talk with you again
Because a vision softly creeping
Left its seeds while I was sleeping
And the vision that was planted in my brain
Within the sound of silence
In restless dreams I walked alone
Narrow streets of cobblestone
‘Neath the halo of a street lamp
I turn my collar to the cold and damp
When my eyes were stabbed by the flash of a neon light
That split the night
And touched the sound of silence
And in the naked light I saw
Ten thousand people maybe more
People talking without speaking
People hearing without listening
People writing songs that voices never shared
No one dared
Disturb the sound of silence
“Fools,” said I, “you do not know
Silence like a cancer grows
Hear my words that I might teach you
Take my arms that I might reach you”
But my words like silent raindrops fell
And echoed in the wells of silence
And the people bowed and prayed
To the neon god they made
And the sign flashed out its warning
In the words that it was forming
And the sign said “The words of the prophets are written on the subway walls
And tenement halls
And whispered in the sound of silence
He made me listen twice, knowing that the first time through I should probably close my eyes as the video is pretty intense and might be distracting. I had no idea what was coming. (He was right. It was hard for this 68 year old not to assume things about the look of the singer or the name of the band, as well as the visual images.) We listened together and were both in tears at the end, just from the sheer power of the artistry.
SO anyway, here’s what he played for me. Crank up the volume. Close your eyes. And stay with it to the end. You might be surprised!
Thanks. I hope it means something to you too.