Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Forever Young

Before both Avalyn and Jude were born, I recorded several lullabies for each of them.  We had bought a pair of belly buds, so Jamie could place them on her abdomen and play the lullabies and other songs so the kids could hear them in the womb.  We knew it worked particularly with Avalyn, as even at a couple of days old, she recognized my voice and would shift as much as she could to acknowledge and find it.

For both kids, it was a pretty eclectic list.  A lot of Sherman Brothers, a lot of Disney, a little Muppets, a little Dylan, and a little Beatles.   We added to these several Rockabye Baby versions of classic rock, with a little classical music as well, for culture.

For Avalyn, the song list included:
  • Hushabye Mountain (from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang)
  • A Dream is a Wish Your Heart Makes (From Cinderella)
  • The Rainbow Connection (from the Muppet Movie)
  • I'm Wishing/One Song (from Snow White)
  • It's A Small World (from the ride - both it and I'm Wishing/One Song were to play with me singing harmony/counterpoint against myself)
  • Stay Awake/Feed The Birds (from Mary Poppins)
  • La La Lu (from Lady and the Tramp)
For Jude, the list became even more eclectic.
  • Someday (from The Hunchback of Notre Dame)
  • You'll Be In My Heart (from Tarzan)
  • You've Got a Friend in Me (from Toy Story)
  • Hey Jude (by the Beatles, of course.  This was fun, because while I played with two-part recording for Avalyn, I recorded three and four part harmony here to emulate the Beatles sound.  It's really tough to sing softly like a lullaby).
  • and Forever Young (by Bob Dylan, the slow version)
I'm not typically the biggest Dylan fan.  I love a lot of his songwriting and am a fan of his gospel songs.  Gotta Serve Somebody, I Believe in You, and Saved are all excellent songs.  I just never really warmed to him as a singer, until recently. 

I came across Forever Young just a year and a half ago.  I knew the Rod Stewart version, but didn't know either of Dylan's versions or its history.  Disney used the song as a closer for World of Color during the 60th Anniversary of Disneyland, and I fell in love with the words. 

Dylan wrote the song as a prayer for his oldest son Jesse, and wrote two versions so he wouldn't be too sentimental.  It owes much of its initial verse to the priestly blessing in Numbers 6.  "The Lord bless and keep you; the Lord make His face shine on you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace." (24-26).

In the lyrics, there is so much truth in what a parent wishes for their child.  So while Hey Jude will always be forever linked to Jude (he was born almost literally on cue to the song), Forever Young will remain my hope for both he and Avalyn.

May God bless and keep you always
May your wishes all come true
May you always do for others
And let others do for you

May you build a ladder to the stars
And climb on every rung

May you grow up to be righteous
May you grow up to be true
May you always know the truth
And see the lights surrounding you

May you always be courageous
Stand upright and be strong

May your hands always be busy
May your feet always be swift
May you have a strong foundation
When the winds of changes shift

May your heart always be joyful
May your song always be sung

And may you stay forever young

Dylan, Bob. "Forever Young." Planet Waves, CBS Records, 1979.

No comments:

Post a Comment