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Singer/Songwriters...I Love These Three--I Want Your Input!!!

the mathemagician

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I love a good story. Better yet, I love someone who tells a good story that is set to great music. A great musician, great writer, great storyteller; very seldom does someone come along that embodies the whole triumverate.


I was a child of the '70's and a young adult in the '80's. From this period, not suprisingly, came my favorite singers, songwriters, and music idols. There are three gentlemen that, in my opinion, are the epitomy of what a singer/songwriter/storyteller should be. Each of these men meant so much to me as a child and a young adult. Their stories and melodies take me back to certain events in my youth and, in some cases, I had life-changing epiphanys while listening to their music.


A couple of days ago, I sat down for several hours and listened, once again, to a lot of the music from these three. Once again, the musical sojourn took me back to a place where I long to return, but never can. I am older now, my childhood far behind me. I am likely closer to the sunset of my life than the sunrise. Yet, through the music of Zevon, Fogelberg, and Lightfoot, I can slip back vicariously for a few moments to The Innocent Age, a time when life was all about fun and play and being responsible meant being home in time for supper and putting your toys away.


Warren Zevon, Dan Fogelberg, and Gordon Lightfoot--- two of them are gone now, and one had a close call with death a while back. I can' tell you how sad that makes me. When those who told you stories as a boy pass on, you lose a part of yourself; you lose your childhood all over again. You connect intimately to those who sing you to sleep at night with your favorite stories. The bond that I shared with these men was as real and as intimate as those I shared with family and loved ones.


I miss Warren and Dan so much. They died way too soon. But much could be discerned about these men by the courage and dignity that showed as their bodies slowly turned against them.Though ravaged by cancer, each showed compassion, strength, humor, and tremendous love of family and friends in their last days.


On Thursday, after spending several hours listening to the musical genious that was Zevon, Fogelberg, and Lightfoot, I was physically and emotionally drained. I also shed some tears, not just for Zevon and Fogelberg, but for the part of me that died with them. Since Dan passed away last December , I had been unable to go back and listen to his stuff. What a pure , sweet instrument of a voice he had. And what an amazing poet. Some of his early stuff he penned when he was only 17 or 18. I have probably listened to Souvenirs thousands of times front and back.


Zevon,while possessing a unique voice, didn't have the pure vocals of a Fogelberg. Nonetheless, his voice suited his words and music perfectly. Zevon was a genious. He could pound out the tunes on the piano and could flat out accomplish anything he wantd on the guitar. Zevon had the most bizarre sense of humor I have ever witnessed. I have never ceased to be amazed at how he could take some of those strange lyrics and write such beautiful and fitting music to them.


Rolling Stone said of Zevon: "Literate, satiric, violence-obsessed, funny as hell, piano-pounding, equally capable of deranged rock-outs and beautifully sustained melodies."



And Gordon Lightfoot, what can I say? Simply the perfect combination of a consumate storyteller, strong, resonant voice, and haunting melodies. He took us on some of the greatest musical storyrides ever, whether it be down the Carefree Highway or aboard the Edmund Fitzgerald.



Warren Zevon, Dan Fogelberg, and Gordon Lightfoot-- I honor them for leaving an indelible stamp on my life and for leaving us with stories that reflect the human condition, the human psyche, and the power of human emotion.


For those who are familiar with the musical offerings of these three men, please do me a favor and take a moment or two and give me your input on one or more of them. I know some on here are too young to remember them, and that's too bad. But for those that do, what are your impressions on three of my very favorite singer/songwriters? If you would, list your three favorite songs by each of these artists. How do you think these men will be remembered as musicians and songwriters???What would be your review of their music and their writing and storytelling abilities???


I value your input. Thanks.



Zevon showing his humor and playing guitar to L,G&M(I can so see Jim Schue echoing what Zevon says in his intro to this song after a night of imbibing a plethora of various liquids): "Improbable and grotesque mischief" :lol:


Edited by Birdsfan
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And the morning will blow away

As the waves crash and fall

And the reach like a siren sings

As she beckons and calls

As the coastline recedes from view

And the seas swell and roll

I will take from the reach

All that she has to teach

To the depths of my soul...



The wind brings a chill

There's a frost on the sill in the morning

It creeps through the door

On the edge of the shore

Ice is forming

Soon the northers will bluster and blow

And the woods will be whitened

With snowfall

And the reach will lie frozen

For the lost and unchosen to row...


Dan Fogelberg---"The Reach"

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I used to fall asleep every night to this Fogelberg offering...absolutely gorgeous music.This song is off of the album Souvenirs and speaks to all of us who believe that life is all about taking chances --both in life and in love! Here's DF with his beautiful composition "There's a Place in the World for a Gambler" :



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While reading the other thread about Father's Day, I was struck and very moved by the folks on here who have already lost your fathers. It made me very thankful that I still have my old man, even though he isn't well. I want to send out this wonderful Dan Fogelberg song in honor of all of your fathers and in memory of all of your dear dads who have passed on.


Dan wrote this song as a tribute to his own father, who was a band leader. He speaks shortly about his relationship with his dad at the end of song.

This one's for all of your dads. If he is still with you, hug him tomorrow and tell him how much you love him.


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Great thread, Math. I'm going to have to think about this one, but I'm pretty sure I can't narrow my Warren Zevon faves down to three.


"Excitable Boy" is my far and away favorite. The groove on the piano, and the beautiful melody are in such stark contrast to the lyrics, it just plain works.


The rest would be from among these:

"Hit Somebody (The Hockey Song)"

"Boom Boom Mancini"

"Carmelita" (I've always loved Dwight Yoakum's version as well, but the original is best

"Poor Poor Pitiful Me"

"Lawyers, Guns and Money" (natch!)

"Dirty Life and Times"

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