Introduction

I’m imagining that these writings will be an attempt to justify the inordinate importance which songs, moreso even than ‘pieces of music’, have always had in my life.

So, I’m going to chart –randomly, and as they occur in daily life –songs that have assumed a kind of resonance with me –evoking clear memories of when I first heard them, or the emotions and thoughts which I associate with them,and perhaps the kind of symbolic significance with which they might have seemed invested at the time, or become invested subsequently. If we’re lucky, there may even be a little analysis of lyrical content or reflections on accompaniment and performance!

When I say songs of course, these will primarily be the ‘popular song’ which commercial opportunities made ubiquitous for my generation.  My class meant that art-song, lieder, operatic arias and ecclesiastical chants, anthems and cantatas were largely inaccessible…  But instead we were soaked in musichall ditty, Hollywood crooner tunes, swing and dance numbers, nursery rhymes, folk ballads and sing a longs, and then most of all pop songs: those three and four minute singles aiming for ‘chart success’, and then the slightly more sophisticated, crafted creations which were the privileged purchase of said success –album tracks and such.

So here we go: I sing the body electric –and acoustic.

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