"In daily life we must see that it is not happiness that makes us grateful, but gratefulness that makes us happy." Brother David Steindl-Rast

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Layla, Linda, and Loverboy

Today I am grateful for warmer weather and an outdoor run with Darcy. I am also grateful for being able to laugh at myself more than I used to.

Layla by Derek and the Dominos is on my "Top 5 Favorite Songs of All Time" for sure. Don't ask me why. I think I have always liked the song because it takes the listener through the full range of human emotions. Listen to it here. The first three minutes are intense and include vocals, but the next three minutes are the ones that always moved me the most. Looking back, I think it is because the despair in that part of the song matched the despair and confusion in my own mind and heart at times in my youth. It still stops me short and brings me to the brink of tears (which is as close as I usually get).

Layla has an interesting history too. It was written by Eric Clapton and Jim Gordon, inspired by a Persian poem about unrequited love, but also about Clapton's own unrequited love for Pattie Boyd. Boyd, a model and actress, was then married to George Harrison, but later divorced him and married Clapton. They later divorced. Incidentally, Harrison's song Something was also inspired by Boyd.

Loverboy needs to be discussed in this post. They earned the acknowledgement because they gave my generation quintessential rock songs like Turn Me Loose, The Kid is Hot Tonite, Lovin' Every Minute of It, When It's Over, and Lucky Ones. Then there is the bleak Teenage Overdose, another of my favorite "drinking songs." "One foot in hell" for sure.

Linda Ronstadt deserves a mention here too. The Words and Music of Linda Ronstadt is a post I wrote a couple of years ago. Suffering from Parkinson's disease, sadly Ronstadt is no longer able to sing, but what a legacy of songs we can still enjoy.

As I wrote in my previous post, Ronstadt said these words in an interview at the time:

"I can walk and I can talk. It's a good day."

I can listen to and be touched by the music of many wonderful singers and songwriters. It's a good day. 

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