I won’t be renewing the contract for this website, so you will be able to enjoy it until 12th April 2023. after that there will be an archive site available, but no further updates. Thanks to all the contributors and everyone who has taken an interest.
Spirit In The Sky
What a great song! Originally written and released by Norman Greenbaum in 1969, this has become a rock standard, with other cover versions by Doctor and the Medics and Gareth Gates . Greenbaum (who was raised Jewish) apparently wrote the song in about fifteen minutes, blending some generic gospel sentiments from music he had heard on TV with wording that he had spotted on a greetings card about native American beliefs. Greenbaum had been a working musician in the folk style for years, playing with Dr. West’s Medicine Show & Junk Band, who released the novelty song ‘The Eggplant That Ate Chicago’. It looks fair to say that the religious message of the Spirit In The Sky did not draw on the composer’s deep personal convictions. And yet …
Something about it captured a popular sentiment – a lingering hope for life in the hereafter based on half-remembered Christian beliefs; Greenbaum says Spirit In The Sky is still one of the most requested songs for use at funerals. Now, over fifty years after the original release, the song is used as a clap along crowd pleaser as in this performance by Evol Walks.
There is a complicated interaction between the composer’s original, conscious intent and the influences received during the writing and created by the performance. Then, much later. the song is performed by someone else in a different situation and the song gains a new meaning for that time, place, performer and audience. When Greenbaum wrote the song in late 60’s America, there was ongoing racial tensions and other civil rights campaigns, the background nuclear terror of the Cold War, the triumph of the moon landing, the Woodstock festival and the grinding horror of the ongoing Vietnam war.
So maybe the song is a real prayer, if you make it a real prayer for you. I hope you do.
Your kindness and love will always be with me each day of my life, and I will live for ever in your house, LORD. Psalm 23.
Always On My Mind
Here’s a song we shared at a recent online ‘On The Edge Together’ session.
My song was Elvis singing Always on my mind. Chose it as I loved the emotion he was portraying in his voice, and the feeling of love which I feel transfers to other listeners. Sung with love, passion and feeling, reminding me of how Jesus was.Kos Kailou
“And now I give you a new commandment: love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” John 13:34