Tales of 14-Songs-in-14-Days: Live blogging This 7th Challenge

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by Jan Seides
Friday 4th January, 2013, 7:53pm

I guess this is turning into some kind of pattern. Once again, this time, I went into this challenge reluctantly and almost said no.  The thing is …. what if the song I always wanted would have been born during this challenge that I just said “no” to.  I would never know, of course. And maybe the song would be written anyway, which I’d also never know.  But the very idea makes me as reluctant to refuse as I am reluctant to participate.  And the idea of  the reward (the new song), keeps me saying “yes”.

Good thing, too!  There’s been a song I’ve wanted for about two decades that finally got written this time!

We timed this challenge for between Thanksgiving and Christmas. That will probably never happen again, or at least I hope not, because there was simply no time for anything. Not really surprising, given the time of year.  I ended up with only eleven songs, because everything was heating up, we were making travel plans, and a million other things.  It wasn’t that the songs couldn’t be written. They were written. But there was virtually no quiet time in which to record.

Oh, and no time to live-blog it either. Better late than never, right?

So…..

Here are the eleven, as they appeared:

Day 1:  SOMETIMES AROUND MIDNIGHT

My daughter Raina’s wedding had been October 6th, and she and her husband, Jesse, had moved to Los Angeles.  She and I are very close, but I can’t see her without her former, little, self superimposed over her present, grown-up self.  I took a gazillion pictures; I recorded her voice; but that’s not what’s missing.  Sometimes I wake up and miss her little self pretty powerfully.

Sometimes around midnight
I let myself recall
When you wore bows and lace
And little shoes that were so small

Sometimes around midnight
I wander down the hall
And gaze at your diplomas
And awards that line the wall

Child, I miss you.
I miss the little arms around my shoulders
Time has passed and you’ve grown up
And I’ve grown older
I still see you in my dreams
Child I miss you.

And sometimes around the midnight
I see you playin’ with your dolls
And I see you on your bike
Or turning somersaults

Sometimes around midnight
I really want to call
But I know that you’ll be sleeping
And I’d make your dream dissolve

Did we have enough fun?
Did we laugh hard enough?
Did I teach you well?
Did you know how much you were loved?

Child, I miss you.
I miss the little arms around my shoulders
Time has passed and you’ve grown up
And I’ve grown older
I still see you in my dreams
Child I miss you.

You have a life
You are a wife/You have a wife
But child I miss you.

Day 2: FAR BEHIND THE CURVE

…. which I already was, having had no time to record the first one. Now I’ve got two unrecorded songs. Life’s not fair…..

When I wake up in the morning
Before I’ve said a word
The to-do list grows another mile
No matter how fast I go
No matter how hard I work
It just keeps gettin’ later
I’m far behind the curve

On the day that I was born
The first words that I heard
‘You’re late. You missed your due date.
You’re already far behind the curve

G-d put me here
To accomplish certain tasks
I’m so far behind now
My life is gonna have to last
Forever
I will never die.

How did I come to pay this price
How did I come to deserve
To struggle through this kind of life
And be far behind the curve……

Day 3: GYPSY HEART

This one started out as I’m   the one with the gypsy heart, but it was a little too self-important for me.  So I changed it. Much better, I think.

He’s got a gypsy heart
He’s got his walkin’ shoes
He’s got his cruisin’ wheels
He’s got the stay-at-home blues
He’s got a head full of songs
He’s got his old guitar
He calls it travelin’ music
Cuz he’s got a gypsy heart

He’s got a gypsy heart
I’ve got a feather bed
I’d try to make him happy
I’d keep him warm and fed
But I gotta let him go
We’re gonna have to part
Cuz I’ve known his kind before
He’s got a gypsy heart.

Maybe one day he’ll want to settle down.
Maybe one day … but I can’t wait around hopin’

He’s got a gypsy heart
So I got a choice to make
If we can’t travel together
I got my own road to take
I can’t change someone else
I am at least that smart
Tomorrow he’s movin’ on
Cuz he’s got a gypsy heart.
I won’t be goin’ along
He’s got a gypsy heart.

Day 4:  THE SONGS MY BUBBE SANG

Bubbe means grandmother in Yiddish, and I’ve already used this one to open my show of Yiddish songs and stories which I performed in Abilene, Texas.  If you can imagine a more unlikely place to do this show, you’re ahead of me.

My bubbe came here from a foreign land
And sang me songs I’d never heard before
She’d hum them in her kitchen washing pots and pans
And sing them to me softly while she sewed
She sang in words I didn’t understand
And whistled melodies I didn’t know
And that is how I came to hear the songs
The songs my bubbe sang.

As I grew up I saw her less and less
I got my own songs from the radio
I didn’t understand that I was blessed
With a heritage of song centuries old
All I saw was the funny way she dressed
All I heard was the odd way she spoke
But i never did forget the songs
The songs my bubbe sang.

Then I had children of my own
And though I sang to them
I never sang the songs
The ones my bubbe sang.

Till the day I was whistling while I worked
And my youngest said “What’s that melody?”
To my surprise I still knew all the words
Though the meaning was still a mystery.
That is why we decided to relearn them
So she can sing her children of their history
And teach them to appreciate the songs
The songs my bubbe sang

Day 5: ‘SPECIALLY AT CHRISTMAS

I have some pictures to show you for this one. The song explains it all.

It started several years ago
One cedar tree, beside the road
Had ornaments and artificial snow
Mysteriously one day

The next year, there were two or three
Christmas trees for you and me
No one knew how this came to be
But we all liked it that way

Our town is known for whimsy
Our town is known for weirdness
Our town is known for crazy
Our town is blessed
‘Specially at Christmas

If you’re here for the holiday
You’ll see them all along the highway
The grass is brown and the sky is gray
But this is how we celebrate.

Our town is known for whimsy
Our town is known for weirdness
Our town is known for crazy
Our town is blessed
‘Specially at Christmas

360Trees2

I sure love Austin!

360Trees

 

This is on Capital of Texas Highway (360), and happened just like I told it.

Day 6: A SUK IN MOROCCO

This was inspired by a cooking/travel show on PBS on that evening.  Everything in the marketplace was beautiful. I’ve never wanted to go to Morocco before…..but this made me hungry!

I want to go to a suk in Morocco
And buy multicolored spices
And vegetables that grew up by the sea
And mysterious veiled women
Who cook exotic dishes
I want to have them cook one up for me.

I want to travel to a home in Morocco
By the great Sahara desert
And ride on a camel all the way
And as the sun goes down
And the stars come out
I’d lean back and watch the goats as they play.

I want to visit Marrakesh
Wear Moroccan leather on my feet
And watch the graceful women as they sway gently down the street
But mostly, I just want to eat.

I want to go to a suk in Morocco
And buy multicolored spices
And vegetables that grew up by the sea
And mysterious veiled women
Who cook exotic dishes
Who would cook them up for me.

I’ll have more for you next time.  I don’t want to wear you out.  Here’s the song I’ve chosen for you from this batch. Hungry yet?:

A Suk in Morocco

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