Wednesday, 30 November 2016
Advent is a time of waiting and the lyrics of this Mumford & Sons classic capture a sense of commitment and longing, of love and faith, of prayer and devotion in a time of waiting.
Tuesday, 29 November 2016
This is Sting's reworking of the 13th Century Basque carol Gabriel's Message. It's the first track on his excellent 'If on a Winter's Night...' album from 2009 which I dig out every year about now. However, this version is a bit edgier than that on the album and was recorded in 1987 as a contribution to the 'A very special Christmas album' for the Special Olympic. Writing about the song on 'If on a Winter's Night...' Sting offers a profound theological insight which it is worth bearing in mind during Advent:
Implicit in the story of the birth of Christ is the knowledge of his death and his subsequent Resurrection. This is what connects it to the secular songs about the cycle of the seasons. We are reminded that there is light and life at the centre of the darkness that is Winter – or conversely, that, no matter how comfortable we feel in the cradle, there is darkness and danger all around.
Monday, 28 November 2016
I'm going to be cheating a bit during this series as several of the songs I'll post are by Bob Dylan but covered by different artists. This version of Pressing On from the album Saved is by Regina McCrary who was a backing singer for Dylan during the late 70s and early 80s.
Sunday, 27 November 2016
During Lent I posted a song each day that for me resonated with the themes of the season. I've decided to reboot my blog to post songs for Advent along the same lines. The first is a reworking of the classic Advent song 'O Come O Come Emmanuel' by Beat Convention. The rap lyrics are:
Emmanuel, God with us,
In the heart of the night, a flame that flickers,
A dim light in the depth of the winter,
Splinters the cold, control disintegrator.
Behold, time foretold, the plan unfolds,
A crack in the rock, the glimmer of gold
“It’s Christmas, and Oh my God it’s great!
Snowflakes and skates, baby Jesus’ birthday”,
We all sing “Oh come let us adore”,
But are you sure what you’re asking for?
This kid’s gonna grow to have his hands nailed to boards,
War with death, he’s the Trojan horse,
See here’s the things, sin’s got claws,
It’s viral and we’ve all breathed the spores,
My lungs aren’t pure, neither are yours,
And the cure was born as a martyr descending,
Hope secured through premature life ending,
As the world resisted,
Jesus made immigrant in massacre of infants,
War crimes to ‘honour' his existence.
So this year, while you’re out spending, check your understanding, it might need mending,
The love that the Father’s extending is quiet, no war sirens,
But silent night sparked violent fight,
Boy deployed behind enemy lines,
And while that birth marked the end had begun,
The struggle for hearts in the dark goes on.