Thursday, March 29, 2007

Songs as Poetry

I admit that I generally like music for the lyrics as much as the instrumentation. Don't get me wrong...I love plenty of songs which have lyrics I can't decode. There are plenty of rock tunes I like because they are good and loud and have great guitar rifts. But, still, overall, I love the words. That might be why I listen to most kinds of music..rock, pop, jazz, blues, bluegrass, country, celtic, etc. I have to admit I haven't developed a taste for rap, but that's one of the few exceptions. I 'm sure there are powerful lyrics in all types of music.

I was singing along with a song last night after dropping my son off at community college, and I was thinking about the great lyrics...how expressive they were, how poetic. I know I'm not the first person in the world to compare song lyrics to written poetry, so I'm not going to try to claim some astounding new revelation. But a new (for me) thought did enter my head as I sang along. People today love poetry as much now as any time in history. We just sing our poetry more now than ever before.

Singing ballads, songs of war, romance, epics and such has been popular since before there were pencils and paper to write them down. It's not new. But I think what might be new is the shear volume of poetry being written, and the fact that it is now written by people from so many socio-economic backgrounds. Perhaps people have always made up songs and poetry, but without a way to preserve them they were lost to us.

Last night I spent a fun evening looking at lyrics on the web. Looking at the modern day poets such as Sting, Paul Simon, Eric Clapton, John Mayer, Bono, and many, many more. Funny, I thought I didn't really enjoy poetry that much! ;-)




1 comment:

Carol said...

I love the poetry of songs. I have a harder time with straight poetry but the poetry of songs speak to my heart so much. I can't tell you how much I will mull over lyrics! I am sure you have picked that up from reading my blog! That is one of my favorite pasttimes!