Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Family mentions at bluegrass concert

Thanks to the growing community of commenters on this site for keeping an interesting conversation going while we've been between posts. It's nice to have such intelligent and well-spoken men and women dropping by.

Over the weekend, Candice and I sat through the rain for an outdoor concert with Ricky Skaggs and the Kentucky Thunder. We like a pretty eclectic range of music, but over the past couple of years we've grown to especially appreciate the sound, conventions and heritage of bluegrass. Another thing that jumped out at the Ricky Skaggs concert was a pervasive sense of family and community. Throughout the concert, Skaggs talked about his family and band member's families. In a song called the "Simple Life" he slipped in the line, "My favorite thing to hear is, 'Daddy, I'm so glad you're home." In "Black-Eyed Suzie" he sang, "All I need to make me happy is four little kids to call me pappy."

These are the kinds of comments and song lines that make some people groan and complain of sentimentalism. For me, they were refreshing surprises after years of going to concerts where artists find interesting things to say and sing about everything other than the fundamental life relationships that most of us end up experiencing (90% of men and women end up marrying and nearly three-quarters of all marriages include kids).

Is it because artists often suppose people want to transcend mundane things like family that they find so little to sing about it? Does it affect our perception of the value of pursuing family if we have scores of songs in our MP3 players that celebrate sexual energy, romantic pursuits and high jinx, but little that tie those themes to the dailiness of marriage and parenting?

I read an article recently about MP3 players giving people the opportunity to give their lives a soundtrack. Any favorite suggestions out there for soundtrack entries that celebrate marriage and kids?


At 4:48 PM, Blogger mjpauls said...

A song I really enjoy is "Rich Man" by Paul Brandt. The chorus goes:

When she smiles or they call me Daddy
All the worries of the world just seem to fade away
I'm alive and I know what matters
If this is all I ever have
Well, that's ok
I'm proud to say I'm a rich man

At 5:20 PM, Blogger Firinnteine said...

On marriage, I really like Noel Paul Stookey (of Peter Paul and Mary), "The Wedding Song."

At 8:35 PM, Blogger rubybeth said...

Maybe it's cheesy, but "Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da" by the Beatles is one of my favorites, all about getting married and and going on with life as it comes along.

At 1:25 PM, Blogger Ashleigh said...

I love the lyrics to Andrew Peterson's song, "Family Man."

At 5:09 PM, Blogger Firinnteine said...

The Beatles' "When I'm Sixty-Four" also has a certain charm to it. :)


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