Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Songs That Tell Stories

Year 4-Day 34: Today, I am grateful for ballads...songs that tell stories. 

Music is a rich part of my life.  I am not alone.  Most of us have music woven into our memories.  There are more kinds of music than I can list from classical to grunge.  There is a little something for everyone.  

No matter the genre...from country to Christian is the songs that tell a story that capture not just my ear, but my heart.  I suspect, I am not alone.  

Our children love to sing "Only a Boy Named David", "Zacchaeus"  and "Joshua Fought the Battle of Jericho." Growing up, "Wildfire", "Honey", "Big John", "Billy Don't Be a Hero", "Rocky" and "Leader of the Band" come to mind. Set a story to song and we remember so much more.  

Dad and Mom love Johnny Horton. "In 1814, we took a little trip, along with Colonel Jackson down the mighty Missisipp. We took a little bacon and we took a little beans..." And, so begins the song "The Battle of New Orleans". 

One of the most famous ballads ever written was out of tragedy.  On this day, February 3, 1959, a plane crash killed Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens & J.P. "The Big Bopper" Richardson. Don McLean wrote and released the song in 1971. It was an instant hit and classic. For some, it took them back to the day they heard the news of the loss of three popular rock-n-roll artists. For others, the young, they were hearing the story for the first time. Tragedy seems to sell newspapers and songs. 

American Pie by Don McLean
A long long time ago
I can still remember how
That music used to make me smile
And I knew if I had my chance
That I could make those people dance
And maybe they'd be happy for a while
But February made me shiver
With every paper I'd deliver
Bad news on the doorstep
I couldn't take one more step
I can't remember if I cried
When I read about his widowed bride
Something touched me deep inside
The day the music died
So...Bye, bye Miss American Pie
The story will be told again and again, because it was put to song. Ballads play an important role in passing down stories from generation to generation. 
One of my current favorite albums is a project put together by Nichole Nordeman called "Songs Inspired by The Story".  It is a two CD project that includes the stories of many Bible greats. Yes...every song is a ballad! The songs have a very real and gritty sense about them.  Real people with real struggles who come face to face with an omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent and just God. Many of today's contemporary Christian artists joined the project.  It is soul food with a tune. My favorites are "Bend" (Joseph), "It Must Be You"(Moses) and "Born For This" (Queen Esther). The project is a few years old, but it is powerful and timeless. 

Psalm 89:1 says: I will sing of the steadfast love of the Lord, forever; with my mouth I will make known your faithfulness to all generations.

We have a story to tell to all generations. When we set the story to is easier to hand it down from one generation to the next.

Today, I am grateful for ballads...songs that tell stories. 

No comments:

Post a Comment