Friday, October 8, 2010

SFL Friday -- Grow Old With Me.



Rumpole notes that tomorrow would be John Lennon's 70th birthday.

I've spent the last few days listening to the newly remastered versions of John's last two albums, the one he formally released shortly before his death (Double Fantasy) and the rough cuts he worked on that Yoko released posthumously (Milk and Honey).

It's pretty remarkable how many songs deal with the future, the spiritual reunion of John and Yoko in heaven, and in fact directly foreshadow his death.

Just off the top of my head, I'm thinking about lyrics like this from "Grow Old With Me":
Grow old along with me
Whatever fate decrees
We will see it through
For our love is true
God bless our love
God bless our love
Or this from "Every Man Has A Woman That Loves Him":
Every man has a woman who loves him,
Rain or shine or life or death.

If he finds her in this life time,
He will know when he presses his ear to her breast.

Why do I roam when I know youre the one?
Why do I laugh when I feel like crying?

Every woman has a man who loves her,
Rise or fall of her life and in death.
Or this from "Dear Yoko":
Oh Yoko!
I'll never ever ever ever gonna let you go,
Oh Yoko!
I'll never ever ever ever gonna let you go,

Even when I'm miles at sea,
And nowhere is the place to be,
Your spirit's watching over me dear Yoko,
Then there's this from "Borrowed Time":
Now I am older
The more that I see the less that I know for sure
Now I am older ah hah
The future is brighter and now is the hour

Living on borrowed time
Without a thought for tomorrow
Living on borrowed time
Without a thought for tomorrow 
I could go on and I'm probably missing the most obvious examples, but you get the idea.

You have to wonder whether there was something in the zeitgeist, in that amazingly short yet fertile period that John and Yoko and his creative team worked on these songs, that these artists picked up on and channeled directly into their music.

Whatever it was, as John himself seemed to realize, his presence most definitely lives on.

RIP

48 comments:

  1. "World without end, world without end"

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  3. Not too familiar with the song but there's a poem by the same title, "Grow Old With Me" by Robert Browning and the first two lines begin the same way as the song.

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  4. The John Lennon at 70 nostalgia tour presents some interesting historical trajectories that are mired in wishful thinking. First Lennon, like all famous people who died young (think JFK, MLK, RFK, James Dean, and to a much lesser extent, Elvis) has the benefit of having died while his admirers were young and whose historical rear view mirror is severely distorted by a vision of what they think the world should have been like as opposed to what it was really like. Let's be honest. We have no clue what John Lennon would be doing today if he were alive. When he died, he was doing work with the New York City Police Department to combat crime in his neighborhood. Many people were surprised he would collaborate with the "enemy." Most people at 70 bear no resemblance to what they were like at 40 just as very few people at 40 think the way they did at 20.

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  5. @ 9:26

    That poem, I believe, was the inspiration for the song.

    @ Shoot The Lawyers

    I know exactly what Lennon would be doing -- working for peace and a common humanity. The police aren't the enemy. That would be warmongering arseholes.

    ReplyDelete
  6. not impressed by lennon or any other muscians. they are losers who cannot obtain any other jobs.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I often think of what Stevie Wonder's legacy would have been had he died right after, say, Songs in the Key of Life.

    He would have been considered a rocket musician, on a uncontrollable creative ride into the cosmos.

    Instead he lived and eked out "Woman in Red," "In Square Circle," "Jungle Fever" etc.....

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