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Songs You Can't Sing for Crying

Jack Blandiver 24 Jan 10 - 06:08 AM
Stower 24 Jan 10 - 06:12 AM
My guru always said 24 Jan 10 - 06:14 AM
Little Robyn 24 Jan 10 - 06:18 AM
kendall 24 Jan 10 - 06:26 AM
MGM·Lion 24 Jan 10 - 06:45 AM
MGM·Lion 24 Jan 10 - 06:50 AM
Smedley 24 Jan 10 - 07:26 AM
MartinRyan 24 Jan 10 - 07:34 AM
GUEST,suegorgeous (away) 24 Jan 10 - 07:42 AM
sciencegeek 24 Jan 10 - 07:48 AM
AllisonA(Animaterra) 24 Jan 10 - 08:01 AM
VirginiaTam 24 Jan 10 - 08:02 AM
Murray MacLeod 24 Jan 10 - 08:38 AM
RTim 24 Jan 10 - 08:39 AM
kendall 24 Jan 10 - 09:03 AM
Alaska Mike 24 Jan 10 - 09:23 AM
GUEST,mauvepink 24 Jan 10 - 09:36 AM
SunrayFC 24 Jan 10 - 09:55 AM
Bat Goddess 24 Jan 10 - 09:55 AM
Crow Sister (off with the fairies) 24 Jan 10 - 10:23 AM
Gillie 24 Jan 10 - 10:24 AM
Tim Leaning 24 Jan 10 - 10:36 AM
topical tom 24 Jan 10 - 10:46 AM
Carol 24 Jan 10 - 11:10 AM
Paul Burke 24 Jan 10 - 11:16 AM
Lighter 24 Jan 10 - 11:21 AM
GUEST,bankley 24 Jan 10 - 11:22 AM
GUEST,DonMeixner 24 Jan 10 - 11:25 AM
GUEST,John J 24 Jan 10 - 11:36 AM
John MacKenzie 24 Jan 10 - 11:48 AM
Bill D 24 Jan 10 - 11:59 AM
SINSULL 24 Jan 10 - 12:10 PM
GUEST,Roger Knowles 24 Jan 10 - 12:11 PM
GUEST,Elmore 24 Jan 10 - 12:20 PM
GUEST,DonMeixner 24 Jan 10 - 12:33 PM
GUEST,JohnB 24 Jan 10 - 12:49 PM
Amos 24 Jan 10 - 12:57 PM
eddie1 24 Jan 10 - 01:04 PM
Jeri 24 Jan 10 - 01:08 PM
Phil Edwards 24 Jan 10 - 01:47 PM
GUEST,julia l 24 Jan 10 - 02:13 PM
Barbara 24 Jan 10 - 02:27 PM
DeanofRochester 24 Jan 10 - 03:01 PM
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GUEST,moira(flying cat) 24 Jan 10 - 04:23 PM
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fretless 25 Jan 10 - 11:12 AM
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kendall 25 Jan 10 - 07:32 PM
Bill D 25 Jan 10 - 07:54 PM
Songbob 25 Jan 10 - 08:43 PM
Jim Carroll 25 Jan 10 - 08:45 PM
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Bryn Pugh 26 Jan 10 - 10:13 AM
Cats 26 Jan 10 - 01:40 PM
kendall 26 Jan 10 - 01:48 PM
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kendall 26 Jan 10 - 05:17 PM
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MGM·Lion 28 Jan 10 - 02:44 AM
GUEST,Sapper in the Far North 28 Jan 10 - 06:11 AM
GUEST,Mr Red 28 Jan 10 - 06:16 AM
Micca 28 Jan 10 - 06:31 AM
Smedley 28 Jan 10 - 07:09 AM
AllisonA(Animaterra) 28 Jan 10 - 07:47 AM
AllisonA(Animaterra) 28 Jan 10 - 07:48 AM
Pistachio 28 Jan 10 - 05:57 PM
Bert 28 Jan 10 - 06:25 PM
Phil Edwards 29 Jan 10 - 04:24 AM
Sean Mc 29 Jan 10 - 08:31 AM
oggie 29 Jan 10 - 08:31 AM
Bat Goddess 29 Jan 10 - 08:48 AM
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Subject: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 06:08 AM

This was touched on (perhaps) in the Big Boys Ballads thread, but as no ballad has ever made me choke up with tears whilst singing it (the occasional lump in the throat perhaps) I thought it might be worth a thread on its own.

Time was, I could never get through Bellamy's setting of Danny Deever without cracking up; lately its been Ford O' Kabul River, which I've re-imagined as a doddering old colonel, circa 1960, in his dotage, thinking back to the events of that fateful night in 1879 - about the only thing he can remember, vividly, as he sits by his roaring fire in his crumbling country pile, whilst without the storms roar and the England he fought for steadily goes to the dogs...

The worst one, however, is Hamish Henderson's Banks of Sicily - this never fails to make me a blubbering wreck, stiff upper lip and all, in its depictions of the essential humanity that arises in situations of unimaginable (for me) adversity.

All war songs. Odd that.

What's yours?


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Stower
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 06:12 AM

I can now sing Lady Diamond in public. But it took me several months of practice before I could sing it without my voice cracking. I had to keep leaving it and coming back to it. Even now the thought of that story fills me with emotion. It's a similar story to lots of other songs, of course, but in Lady Diamond there is something about the way the story is told that just gets me.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: My guru always said
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 06:14 AM

It took me a LONG time to be able to sing 'the Dutchman' without crying. First time out I failed, but the room helped me through!


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Little Robyn
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 06:18 AM

Eric Bogle's No-man's Land. Also The Band played Waltzing Matilda.
Robyn


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: kendall
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 06:26 AM

After 25 years I got to where I could sing The Band Played Waltzing Matilda.
Others were:
The Wheelhouse Door.
Ashes on the sea.

I dont sing at all anymore but The Jeannie C did it to me too.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 06:45 AM

Band Played WM 4 me too!


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 06:50 AM

Another one for purely personal reasons. Fair & Tender Ladies — I have a v nice photo of me singing it at a party in 1958. Whenever my wife showed that pic to anybody she would say "As the flash went off for that photograph it flashed thru my mine 'That's the young man I'm going to marry'"; & so she did - for nearly ˝-century. And now she's dead. And so I can't sing it any more for tears. And here they come now...


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Smedley
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 07:26 AM

You'll get us all crying if you tell stories like that, M.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: MartinRyan
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 07:34 AM

A few years ago, I started using the first verse of Lorca's lament for a bullfighter as a lead-in to a version of the Spanish Civil War song The Valley of Jarama. Even now, I can't finish it without tears in my eyes.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,suegorgeous (away)
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 07:42 AM

Kilkelly, Ireland
Widdecombe Fair (SOH, that is)

Yet sometimes it depends entirely on who's doing the singing. I've occasionally been moved to tears by a song that's never made me cry before, just because of how it's been sung.

Alhough I can quite see why Waltzing Matilda would induce tears, never does it for me.

MtheGM - ah, they're the saddest kind. I can't hear Time After Time without shedding a brief tear for my long-separated ex (even though we're very happily separated!)


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: sciencegeek
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 07:48 AM

As a kid, I could never make it through the theme song Exadus without choking... haven't sung it for years... wonder if it would still happen?

"Taps" will get me if I don't steel myself first. I sang that and Land O the Leal at my brother's memorial... about wiped me out.

But good point about war songs... the senseless preventable loss.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: AllisonA(Animaterra)
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 08:01 AM

Some years ago there was a thread entitled "Singing through the tears" on this topic, and lots of wonderful folks posted songs. I can't get the forum search function to work for me, but maybe someone else can find it.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 08:02 AM

Anything that makes me think of my daughter Andie.

Only Remembered This is Coope, Boyse and Simpson and very nice, but I like the No Worries version better.

Beulah Land Andie's 12 year old harmony was nicer. I cannot sing it without it catching in my throat.

Bedlam Boys because I remember Andie learning it when she was 15. Her excitement in sharing it with me.

Loch Lomond because I can't hear it without remembering Andie teaching a handful of giggling teenage girls in medieval garb to sing in different parts at an SCA event.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Murray MacLeod
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 08:38 AM

For me, it's

Richard Thompson's "How Can I ever be Simple Again"

Jed Strunk "A Daisy a Day"

John Austin Marshall "Dancing at Whitsun"


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: RTim
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 08:39 AM

Si Kahn's - Here is My Home.
I recorded it on a CD, and since I have not been able to sing it live.
I now live in the USA and my 2 children from my first marriage and their children still live in the UK, and all I think of is them when I try to sing it.

Tim Radford


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: kendall
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 09:03 AM

If you never feel like this when you sing or hear a really sad song, you are missing something or stuffing it.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Alaska Mike
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 09:23 AM

When I was 7, my older brother Pete died of pneumonia. Some 35 odd years later I wrote a song about him. I had tears running down my cheeks throughout the writing and didn't dare sing it in public for the next 6 to 8 months for fear of blubbering on stage. It is still my favorite of all the songs I have written, and it still makes me glow inside with his memory.

Mike


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,mauvepink
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 09:36 AM

I have found several songs extremely hard to sing initially. Something about the meshing of the tune and the words as they hit deeper into me. "No man's land" was one, with "A town I loved so well" another. "Christmas Eve 1914" amd "Margarita" two more. Many songs deeply move me to tears and it takes a while to get through that emotional level before I can progress to singing them in full.

A couple of songs I have written myself also do it. They were written as poems for other people I love and care about. I then set tunes to them. It was hard to get through them and, on some days, still are. But I would not be without those feelings for anything.

My emotions and tears tell me I am alive. The singer/songwriter that can reach into my soul is to be admired. I cry at films a lot too lol!

I WANT music to reach in and do this to me. I love classical music and bel canto opera for the same reasons. It's the running out of tissues I hate...

;-)

mp


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: SunrayFC
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 09:55 AM

Sometimes when I hear people sing I cry.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 09:55 AM

For years I had trouble learning "Dancing At Whitsun" -- I'd tear up. Just the thought of all those villages with all the men wiped out in that horrible war, before the powers that be learned that if a battalion or regiment were made up of men from one location, if that group were obliterated, that meant all the men from that home location were lost -- leaving the widows and the children to carry on the traditions.

Linn


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Crow Sister (off with the fairies)
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 10:23 AM

Actually, the ballads (so far) do affect me - though mainly on first learning. The Great Selkie can still catch me, especially when singing it while in the bath and imagining myself as the young woman standing upon this far flung rock at Sule Skerry while she's contemplating diving into the waves crashing about her.. "I'll drown myself at Sule Skerry"

But such mythic images and archetypal fairytale scenes seem to cut more deeply for me, than more mundane tales.

The bit where King Orfeo persues his bride and waits for seven years in the green wood to become overgrown with it, keeps catching me out..

Blubbing proper? I don't know that anything has reduced me to inconsolable sobbing of late.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Gillie
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 10:24 AM

Absent Friends all ways does it for me!


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Tim Leaning
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 10:36 AM

Almost anything I sing has that effect on the audience.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: topical tom
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 10:46 AM

My first two choices would be identical to Little Robyn's and I would add "Once I Rode An Orphan Train" by David Massengill and "Christmas in the Trenches" by John McCutcheon. They bring tears to my eyes without fail.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Carol
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 11:10 AM

A song that I taped my mother singing, for me to learn - to sing for the oldies, she said. I worked in sheltered housing and she was 70+ at the time, it's When I leave the World Behind, I think by Irving Berlin.
Also a song about WW1 by Debbie Cooke called the First Time.
I love Here is my home and How can I keep from Singing but just feel soppy,emotional after singing them!!


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Paul Burke
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 11:16 AM

Young but Growing, Underneath Her Apron, Close the Coalhouse Door. Aberfan was very vivid for me; I was only a couple of years older than them.

Bairns that saw the blackness slide,
Bairns that had no time to hide,
There's bairns beneath the mountainside.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Lighter
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 11:21 AM

I am fascinated by this. Without saying which, some of these songs actually make me sneer - at the blatant, formulaic manipulation by the authors.

Without saying which, others don't.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,bankley
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 11:22 AM

"Green Onions" by Booker T and the MGs

fortunately it's an instrumental...






just kiddin' around...


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,DonMeixner
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 11:25 AM

I can any song with out crying but I've had such a thick tjroat I couldn't continue.

The Fires of Calais by James Keelaghan
The Rocket by Fred Eaglesmith
My Old Man by Jerry Jeff Walker

To name a few.

Don


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,John J
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 11:36 AM

Dancing at Whitsun.

JJ


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 11:48 AM

The Band Played Waltzing Matilda


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Bill D
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 11:59 AM

I learned "The Twa Corbies" partly to condition myself to NOT cry each time I heard it sung by Jean Redpath.

The same with hearing anyone sing "Do You Think That I Do Not Know"

Also, under special circumstances once, I found the tears flowing to "Those Were the Days" ..as I get older, just remembering that event can do it.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: SINSULL
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 12:10 PM

I Remember Loving You


I love the song but hate to hear it.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,Roger Knowles
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 12:11 PM

'My Old Man' by Steve Goodman


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,Elmore
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 12:20 PM

" My Old Man" by Ewan Maccoll


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,DonMeixner
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 12:33 PM

I m fascinated by the amount of songs about the Wars we have been involved with over time.

Don


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,JohnB
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 12:49 PM

I'm with Tim Leaning who posted above, also touched on by Kedall.
For me it's not the song, it is the moment in time and the atmoshphere.
It happens when the audience are in especially good voice and everything is going really well, then you hit a word or a phrase which just kills you on the spot. It "fortunately" often happens to me during the chorus of the songs, near the end and I can fake a bit and re-compose myself for the next verse.
Bloody Magic, JohnB.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Amos
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 12:57 PM

I wrote a song once, and believe it or not it was for my mother-in-law, whom I deeply admire.

"The secret of the living
Is always in the giving,
And the giving keeps on going
On and on...."

it goes in part . First time I sang it to BBW for tryouts I couldn't stay straightfaced, and he first time I sang it for HIL, likewise.

Another, which I can now sing comfortably but could not, was my mother's favorite, which I sang, breaking up between lines, at her funeral.

I sings, because I'm happy.
I sings, because I'm free.
For his on is on the sparrow,
And I know he thinks of me.


I can still hear herself singing it. A beautiful joyous song, but on the occasion, heartbreaking.


A


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: eddie1
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 01:04 PM

Many of the songs mentioned above "get to me" but two particularly so are "Lonely One" by Finbar Furey on the first of the "Folk Friends" albums and "Sonny's Dream". In both cases it was about a year from first hearing before I was able to sing them in public.

Eddie


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Jeri
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 01:08 PM

Bob Franke said, in a songwriting workshop I attended, writing 'from the heart' should make you cry. I know what he meant, even though I don't agree it has to every time. I go someplace when I write songs, and If I go back when I sing later, I can't get through the song. Hell, there are times I can't write because that 'place' wrecks me. There are other people's songs and traditional songs that do that too, and they're not all sad, just full of strong emotion. When I sing, I just can't get too deep into them, can't think too much.

The trick, I think, is to get into a song right up to the point of losing it, and then back off. Some times you don't back off fast enough.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 01:47 PM

I (inadvertently) started this one, saying on another thread that I'd found it hard to learn either the Bonny Hind or Sheath and Knife because I couldn't get through them for crying. It's often said that folk songs are all about death, but the deaths in those two songs are particularly vivid for some reason - I think the incommunicability of the man's grief may be what does it.

Like others, I've filled up (in the privacy of my own home) midway through Dancing at Whitsun; there's a real relentlessness to that song, the message is really hammered home. (By contrast, The Band Played... has never done it for me.) Peter Bellamy's Poor Fellows is another song I have this kind of trouble with.

The song that really sets me off, though, is Nick Drake's Place to be. After a friend died, a few years ago, I listened to Pink Moon several times in a row; even now, just thinking of that song in particular chokes me up.

When I was strong, strong in the sun
I thought I'd see you when day was done
Now I'm weaker than the palest blue
Oh so weak in this need for you


A few months later an act at Chorlton FC sprang it on me; I cried like a baby.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,julia l
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 02:13 PM

For me it is Tommy Sands -There Were Roses
Just can't seem to be able to sing it, though I love the song.
Sometimes songs of lost sailors an fishermen will do it also, though I love to sing the Jeannie C

For years, Fred had trouble with Scarborough Settler's Lament. I once saw him lose it completely in concert. After he recorded it on our "Looking Home" album, he was more able to perform it. Still a powerful experience.

Strange how some songs push buttons you didn't realize you had

Julia L


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Subject: Lyr Add: I CRIED (Ruth Pelham)
From: Barbara
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 02:27 PM

Various songs in the moment do it to me. Sang "How can I keep from Singing" at Mom's services this summer; but trying to sing Here is My Home this NYs at Harmony really wiped me out.
Here's another that often gets me.


I CRIED
by Ruth Pelham

TToday was real tough, I got out of bed,
I cuddled with my teddy bear and then laid down my head
And then I cried, cried, cried cried.

I said, "I won't wear those shoes and I won't wear those socks,
And I won't go to school if I can't bring my new rocks,
And then I cried, cried, cried cried.

Breakfast was a real scene. I would not eat my eggs,
I got jam in my hair and I spilled juice all down my legs,
And then I cried, cried, cried cried.

School was no better. My best friend was sick.
I got gum all on my homework. In gym I got kicked,
And then I cried, cried, cried cried.

Came home after school. Fresh muffins on the plate.
Daddy poured me a glass of milk and hugged me warm and tight,
And then I cried, cried, cried cried.

My dad said, "What is wrong?" and this is what I said:
"I wish that you and Mom would live together again,"
And then I cried, cried, cried cried.

"Your mom and I are good friends, no longer husband and wife,
But we will always love you, we'll love you all our lives,"
And then we cried, cried, cried cried.

Today was real tough. I got ready for bed.
I combed my hair and brushed my teeth and put the pillow over my head,
And then I cried, cried, cried cried.
(gradually slower) cried, cried, cried... cri... (soft snore).


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: DeanofRochester
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 03:01 PM

Have a Go Hero by Queensbury Rules - an amazing modern folk song that I always crack up when I try singing it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LOu_fsAsCI8

Also The Island by Paul Brady


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Lighter
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 03:17 PM

What, no "Joy of Living" by MacColl?


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,moira(flying cat)
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 04:23 PM

for me Ewan McColl's joy of living brings the tears and also the ballad Prince Heathen. The first time I heard that was when silvia barnes sang it in Susex some years ago and it gets me every time.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Joe_F
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 04:59 PM

Follow Me Home
Margery Grey


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: frogprince
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 06:02 PM

Painful Tears:
The Ballad of Penny Evans, by Steve Goodman
Touch a Name on the Wall, by Joel Mabus

"Sappy" tears:
There Goes that Rainbow Again, by Kris K.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,Waltzing Matilda
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 06:13 PM

The Song in question isn't the traditional song Waltzing Matilda, but Eroc Bogles amazing gallipoli war song, The Band Played Waltzing Matilda, I couldn't get through it first time I tried it. Another of his also had a similar effect,The Greenfields Of France, sometimes titled Willy McBride

Another song that got to me was Hank Williams, Mother's Day. And My fav song to perform, very old Irish Read ballad, The Spinning Wheel, oddly the lyrics are quite a cheerful song, but tune is so lilting and reminds me of my childhood in Ireland where I heard it sung first, with a harp backing, beautiful song


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Edthefolkie
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 06:23 PM

I couldn't even begin to sing it, but if I did it'd be Willy O'Winsbury.

And re The Band Played Waltzing Matilda, it took June Tabor a while to sing it without tears, and she was pretty close when I saw her do it a couple of times. So were the audience.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: paula t
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 06:33 PM

"Meet on the ledge" when sung at the end of the fairport Cropredy convention every year always leaves me with a tear in my eye.

"Reunion Hill" by Richard Shindell is a very moving song. It took a lot of time before I could sing it without breaking down.

"She Saw Him Smile" by Harvey Andrews is one I have been trying to sing for years, but still can't get all the way through .A poignant song with a heartbreakingly beautiful melody.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Lanfranc
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 07:50 PM

The best version I ever heard of "No Man's Land" was by Alex Campbell, how I wish he'd recorded it!

I still weep silently over "Sand and Water" sung by Beth Neilsen Chapman, "What is Life" from Orpheo et Euridice sung by Kathleen Ferrier or "When I am laid in earth" from Purcell's Dido & Aeneas. Possibly a sign of going to too many funerals these days. "My Way", howver, leaves me cold.

Of songs I sing, "Last Year's Love", Michael Smith's "Dutchman" and Carole King's "Goin' Back" can still produce prickly eyeballs.

Alan


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 07:53 PM

"What, no "Joy of Living" by MacColl?"
"Joy of Living' is a celebratory song, and far too often taken as a dirge.
Grief and sadness should not be the only emotions evoked by folk song.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Michael Harrison
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 07:55 PM

Gee, I'm one of those fools who can cry at the drop of a hat so it might not be fair to jump in here, but here are some songs that bring tears to me when I try to sing or listen to them.

Harry Chapin - "Corey's Coming" and "Tangled-up Puppet"
Tommy Sands - "Good-bye Love (There's No One Leaving)"
Kathy Mattea - "Where've You Been"
Michael Smith - "Dutchman" (I don't cry, but it is not uncommon for
                folks to do so when I sing it)
Steve Goodman - "My Old Man"
Unknown Author - "Hector Gonzalez" (I heard it by Jim Salestrom)

That's probably enough, though, "Achy, Breaky Heart" will make me cry as well, but I'm not going there. Cheers,...............mwh


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Artful Codger
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 08:27 PM

I'm a soft touch, so a lot of songs choke me up when I sing them (pretty pathetic when you're the only one misting up.) I have the most trouble with Russian songs, like "Я встретил вас" ("I met you") and, most recently, "Где ты, где ты, отчий дом?" ("Where are you, home of my father?")--my eyes are still wet.

Besides the oft-cited "No Man's Land", one I struggled with for the longest time was Elvis Costello's "The Scarlet Tide" (from Cold Mountain). "The Ride of Paul Venarez" ("Billy Venero") also took me a long time to sing all the way through without breaking down.

Heck, I still get teary when Little Joe, the wrangler is found beneath his horse, "mashed to a pulp".


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Callie
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 08:31 PM

Paul Simon's "Hearts and Bones"


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,Gerry
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 08:47 PM

I never had any trouble listening to Tam Lin until someone on the radio (I think it was Phyl Lobl) explained that the bit about holding on to Tam Lin even when the fairy queen turns him into red hot iron and such is about what we have to do in our relationships with those we love even when they are acting their most unloveable. Now it's hard for me to listen to that part of the song without breaking up, and I wouldn't try singing it.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Jerry Rasmussen
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 09:49 PM

There are several gospel songs that can break me down. Without That Night is one (and I wrote it, so you'd think I could get through it.)
My friend Frankie sings He Looked Beyond My Faults and Saw My Needs and when the Gospel Messengers were together, at any one time one of the three of us would choke up and have to turn away at one point in the song. Thre's also a song Dorothy Love Coates sings that I rarely can hear without being reduced to tears.

And then there's Old Dog Shep.

Just kidding...

Jerry


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 10:12 PM

"Now I bring up my sons in a small caravan
For the cottage where my roots were put down
Has been sold by the farmer to a rich city man
Where he spend a few weekends from Town"

Peter Bellamy: Farewell to the Land


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE TERROR TIME (Ewan MacColl)
From: Bill D
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 10:40 PM

a song about the Traveling People:


THE TERROR TIME
(Ewan MacColl)

The heather will fade and the bracken will die
Streams will run cold and clear
And the small birds will be going, and it's then you will be knowing
That the terror time is near.

Whaur will ye gan an' whaur will ye bide
Noo that the work's a' done
And the fairmer disnae need ye, and the cooncils winnae heed ye
And the terror time is come?

The woods give no shelter and the trees they are bare
Snow is falling all around
And the children they are crying, for the bed on which they're lying
Is frozen to the ground

When you need the warmth of your own human kind
You move near a town and then
The sight o' you's offending, an' the police they soon are sending
An' you're on the road again.

Whaur will ye gan an' whaur will ye bide
Noo that the work's a' done
And the fairmer disnae need ye, and the cooncils winnae heed ye
And the terror time is come?


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: olddude
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 11:05 PM

Any song by Harry Chapin
(miss you my friend)


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Deckman
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 11:14 PM

When the late David Spence died in a helicopter crash in California in 1966, many of us sang at a two evening fund raising wake for him at "The Drinking Gourd" ... in San Francisco. The singers were many and the donations were generous. Each night we ended the singing with "The Parting Glass." I have NOT been able to sing the song sonce. bob(deckman)nelson


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Sawzaw
Date: 24 Jan 10 - 11:20 PM

A real heartbreaker at a funeral. It was played at my Mothers Funeral.

Will The Circle Be Unbroken

I was standing by my window
On a cold and cloudy day
When I saw the hearse come rolling
For to carry my mother away.

Will the circle be unbroken
By and by Lord, by and by
There's a better home awaiting
In the sky Lord, in the sky.

Well, I went back home, home was lonely
For my mother she was gone
And all my family there was cryin'
For out home felt sad and alone.

Will the circle be unbroken
By and by Lord, by and by
There's a better home awaiting
In the sky Lord, in the sky.

Undertaker, undertaker, undertaker
Won't you please drive slow
For that lady you are haulin'
Lord, I hate to see her go.

Will the circle be unbroken
By and by Lord, by and by
There's a better home awaiting
In the sky Lord, in the sky.

There's a better home awaiting
In the sky Lord, in the sky...


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 08:49 AM

Forgot one (thanks, Bill). I've never tried the Terror Time, but this Christmas just gone I did do the Moving-On Song. There's one verse I can hardly get through in my head without crying, let alone out loud -

The winter sky was hung with stars
Oh, but one shone brighter than the rest...


(Hanky please.)

Ed - why Willie O'Winsbury, if it's something you can talk about?


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Susanne (skw)
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 10:34 AM

Jim Carroll, songs that move you (me, at any rate) to tears don't necessarily have to be sad. As has been said before, it's more a matter of mood and atmosphere, so that any reasonably serious song is a potential tear-jerker. 'Joy of Living' has moved me to tears at times, so has Dave Sudbury's 'King of Rome' - usually in the car where I've got time to listen closely to Iain MacKintosh's version, NOT June Tabor's terribly mannered one!


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: vectis
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 11:04 AM

I was fine with "Goodby My Nancy O" until Eric Bogle explained it while I was in the audience. Now I can't even think of the blooming song without 'filling up' as I recall my own emotions as my boys emigrated.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: fretless
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 11:12 AM

Not many O-T string band songs have that sort of impact, but back in teh old days I had a friend nearly fail to get through Bob Coltman's BEFORE THEY CLOSE THE MINSTREL SHOW because of the sobbing.

There are lots the conjure tears when I listen to them; BPWM is high on that list.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 11:23 AM

songs that move you (me, at any rate) to tears don't necessarily have to be sad

"Who knows where the time goes?" Might have been different if I'd heard it before the writer's death, mind you.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: mrmoe
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 11:42 AM

I learned last summer of the death of childhood friend "Corky" Charlton.....I was playing a week or so later at a club in Easthampton, Massachusetts and without thought I started one of my favorite Ian Tyson songs - These Friends of Mine....I hadn't performed the song in years and hadn't the slightest idea why I wanted to do it this night.....halfway through it became clear to me why it came to memory and I must admit that finishing the song was extremely difficult.....I have also (in the past) had trouble with Eric Andersen's Cross Your Mind.....


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Barbara
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 11:56 AM

Jerry, I forgot about "the Master of the Sheepfold". I often have trouble getting through that one. Something about knowing you are welcome to come home whether you are perfect or not gets to my tear ducts every time.
Blessings,
Barbara


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,KP
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 12:37 PM

Martin Simpson's Song about his Dad 'You were never any good with money'

Especially the last verse!

'you taught me how to love a song and all you knew of nature's ways, the greatest gifts I've ever known and I use them every day'

Here he is singing it at the Albert Hall
Never any good with Money

KP


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 01:11 PM

Although an irreligious ne'er-do-well by both birth and inclination I nevertheless find myself attending Holy Mass from time to time, chiefly during the Easter Triduum where most things make we weep like a baby. The Procession of the Cross: This is the Wood of the Cross on which my redeemer hung; come, come, let us adore, come, come, let us adore, the Saviour of the world.. The old spiritual Were You There When they Crucified My Lord? is likewise guaranteed to waste me, as do such things as When I Survey the Wondrous Cross (though WAV's rendering has almost entirely ruined it for me) and My Song is Love Unknown.

At Christmas, I can't sing Silent Night for blubbing, but only in the context of worship at Midnight Mass, where things take on a very different hue. Whilst temporarily resident at Worth Abbey a decade or so back I became addicted to Gelineau Psalm Tones; his special for Psalm 110 is still with me yet, but I can't get through it without choking up.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: kendall
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 01:35 PM

John Masefield's poem, The Loch Acrae does it to me too.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Edthefolkie
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 02:54 PM

Pip, I think I'd crack up on Willy O'Winsbury for several reasons.

First - one thinks "Oh dear, this lad's going to finish up like Matty Groves"!

Next one is rather impressed with Janet's father because he's open enough to admit "Well, I can understand why my daughter fell for you".

Then our hero is indignant when Dad tries to bribe him into marriage and says "Look, I'm going to marry her anyway but you can stuff your land".

So the emotional roller coaster ends on a happy note, which always gets me - I'm an optimist. Also the attitudes of the protagonists are both understandable and honourable.

When you couple this with the aristocracy who have sung it - Dick Gaughan and Richard Thompson for instance - and the way Richard used the particular tune I love for "Farewell Farewell" after the death of his girlfriend - well, gets me every time! (sniffs, blows nose...)


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: autoharpbob
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 03:03 PM

Currently "Rosemary's Sister" by Huw Williams and "The only life Gloria knows" by Anthony John Clarke.

Used to be James Taylor's "Fire and Rain" till I read that it was NOT about a girlfriend who died.

"The Band played WM" and "Green Fields of France" of course as well. I saw Eric Bogle do BOTH of these in his set at Southwell this year - wiped half the audience out!


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,suegorgeous away from it all
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 03:54 PM

Autoharpbob - according to Wikipedia references to interviews with JT, Fire and Rain IS (partly) about a girlfriend who died.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,Suegorgeous
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 03:57 PM

... and Fire and Rain used to make me cry, after the suicide of a friend called Suzanne, following release from a mental institution.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Soldier boy
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 06:45 PM

"The Band played Waltzing Matilda" (Eric Bogle)
"Willie McBride (The Green Fields of France)"
and "Will the circle be unbroken" all get my vote for sure.

As well as....

The Fields of Athenry
Carrick Fergus
Goodnight Irene
Black is the colour..
The Soldier (Harvey Andrews)
A mon like thee (The Oldham Tinkers)
Little Pot Stove
Dirty Old Town (Ewan MacColl)
Where have all the flowers gone
The Streets of London (Ralph McTell)
Bridge over troubled waters (Simon and Garfunkle)

Even songs I first heard in early childhood like:

"When I wish upon a star" (in the original 'Pinnocio' film)
and "Somewhere Over the Rainbow"(Judy Garland in 'The Wizard of Oz')

For many of the above songs it depends on the occasion and the people present as to how the songs hit your emotions.
If there is a good lead singer or if there is a bunch of people that just sing their hearts out and all the harmonies start to work together - Wow! - they always blow me away and tears will flow.

I am often moved by lyrics/tunes/films/books by the power of the brilliant soul that created them..and thank God I am because it means that I am human and can be moved to tears..and I love that feeling! And as a bloke I am not in any way ashamed to say that.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 06:47 PM

"Carole King's "Goin' Back" can still produce prickly eyeballs"... and when it is sung by Dusty Springfield, who had a terrible life herself, it really is heartbreaking.

At one time I chose that song to be sung at my funeral... until I read that Dusty Springfield had had it done at hers. It is DEEPLY touching on several levels of emotionality :-(

mp


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: kendall
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 07:32 PM

I know the history of Fields of Athenry and that makes it even more powerful. It wasn't just made up out of whole cloth.
That chorus with the right harmony is beautiful.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Bill D
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 07:54 PM

Sawzaw mentioned "Will The Circle Be Unbroken"

One night in Oct. 1978, a couple days after Maybelle Carter died, this man come into the Red Fox Inn in Bethesda, MD, and played that song....on one of Mother Maybelle's autoharps.

He got thru it, but there weren't many dry eyes in the place.


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE DADDY SONG
From: Songbob
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 08:43 PM

An interesting subject. For me, sometimes it's one song, sometimes it's one singer, one song (sung by someone else, it'd be fine). But for my singing, the Ruth Pelham one mentioned above brings to mind one I wrote for a Bob Franke songwriting class at Pinewoods. I lamented that I kept rewriting as I wrote, and over-intellectualizing, so he told me to write from a child's perspective, about something emotional.

This is the result, and I've never been able to sing it all the way through:

        The Daddy Song

[Tune: “Cannonball Blues” (“Solid Gone”)]

My Daddy left us, he left my Mom and me,
What a rotten thing to do to a little kid like me,
He's gone, my Daddy's gone.
Momma says my Daddy won't be coming back,
What kind of a man would treat a little kid like that?
He's gone, my Daddy's gone.

Cho:        

I feel like crying 'cause he's gone,
So much like crying 'cause he's gone,
My Daddy's gone.

I hate my Daddy, I hope he goes to Hell!
I'm not supposed to say that word, so don't you go and tell.
He's gone, my Daddy's gone.
When I get all growed up, when I get real big,
I'll never, ever, ever do the same thing to my kid.
He's gone, my Daddy's gone.

Cho:

Dad said he would take me to the movies and the Zoo,
But when I saw him falling down, it scared me clear all through.
He's gone, my Daddy's gone.
The fireman and police man came, and they took him away;
Now my Momma's crying, and there's nothing I can say.
He's gone, my Daddy's gone.

Cho:

I don't know what to think, like it's something that I did
To make him want to go away and leave his little kid.
He's gone, my Daddy's gone.
Now my Momma's crying, and I don't know what to do,
I might do it all again, and make her leave me, too.
He's gone, my Daddy's gone.

Cho:


Copyright (C)1990, Bob Clayton


Another song I would have trouble with is "The Boy Who Live Here Has Gone to War," from Sara Cleveland (and Colleen), but I've never learned it, since I can't even get through it hearing it as such.

And I recall a gathering of some of us here where we got into mining songs, and it was all I could do to finish "Sully's Pail."

But of songs I know, the one above is the worst for me.

Bob


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 08:45 PM

Susanne:
"Jim Carroll, songs that move you (me, at any rate) to tears don't necessarily have to be sad."
I totally agree, including The Joy of Living.
I have been to four funerals where it was sung as part of the service (including Ewan's, where a recording of him singing was used) and each time it hasn't failed to move me to tears; the song and the circumstances in which it was sung.
My comment was aimed at the dirge-like approach by several singers; which I believe is totally contrary to the sentiment of the song.
On the other hand - Green Fields of France - no crying matter -
Jim Carroll

Willie Macbride You Bastard You.
Oh, youse know that big long song about Willie MacBride,
Well, to tell yis the god's truth, it turns me inside,
You'll hear it on the Shankhill, you'll hear't on the Falls,
And mostly from people who can't sing at all,
You go out to the pub on a Saturday night,
For a pint and the crack, a-and things are all right
'Till some boy with his shirt out
Slumps down by your side —and says:
"Zing-zzz z'wunn zbouzz Wllee Mmm-Bride,"

Ah, you say you don't know it (but this will not do)
For his plan all along has been to sing it to you.
He knocks over your drink, and takes off in a key
That wasn't constructed for Pava-Rotti;
And with the lines grinding on, Oh, the horror gets worse,
As it slowly sinks in—that he knows every verse.
With his arm round your shoulder, by now he's your friend—and
He's determined to sing this damn thing to the end.

CHORUS:
Did he sing the song badly?
Did they gulp their pints madly?
Did we all fall asleep before we'd finished our round?
Did the barstaff cry, "Last drinks" to stir us?
Did the punters cry, "Thank God it's o-o-o-ver"?

You slip out to the jacks for a quart'r of an hour,
Kill time at the TV set out in the Bar,
And then you sneak back thinking he might have tired,
But he's still choking on gas, tangled up in barbed wire;
And for ten minutes more he continues this rant
Again, and again, and again till you can't
Care that he's up to his oxters in gutters in trench—es, or give
Two tupp'ny damns where the red poppies dance.
CHORUS

Oh, Willie MacBride why the hell did you die?
The trouble you'd have saved if you'd come back alive.
If you'd got a good job, or signed on the b'roo—
We wouldn't have to endure this ould mush about you.
Aye but maybe it's better for you that you're dead
With the green fields of France piled up over your head;
For the trouble you've caused us since that day you died,
Oh, rusty shrapnel's too good for you, Willie MacBride.
CHORUS

And you, Eric Bogle, just what was your game?
White crosses mark out the road to your fame.
Could you not guess the Fureys might drive us insane?
Can you not call them off?—Jasus, we're not to blame!
And why d'you complain about shellfire and smoke?
Sure with PA and cig'rettes, the pubs are no joke.
Where we drink to his mem'ry each weekend we're broke
Makin' Willie Mac Bride's fans consumptive ould soaks.
CHORUS


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,Bernie
Date: 25 Jan 10 - 11:05 PM

Don Williams "Old coyote town",written,[possibly]by the great Bob McDill...maybe Don too...not sure...
....written about an old-timer living out his days alone in a dying town in west Texas....
"like horses,the pickups are parked out in front of a cafe that dont'
need a name...as old men rock,and tumbleweeds roll,past the boarded-up
windows on Main...

" and the interstate rumbles like a river of steel,to a rythym that won't ever slow down
as cars,and trucks,and time pass by that old coyote town...

Daddy falls asleep in the living room,on the sofa with the TV on..
sometimes he waits for a call from me,sometimes he waits too long..
but I still think of those people,and that place that they love...
how much longer will they be around??...
'till it's "ashes to ashes,dust to dust"for their old coyote town...

...no tumbleweed where I come from,but that's my father in that song...I learned it when it came out;never been able to get through it,never will....


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Bryn Pugh
Date: 26 Jan 10 - 10:13 AM

Strange though it might read, the "Cherry Tree Carol" has me choked up.

"The Lambs on the Green Hills".


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Cats
Date: 26 Jan 10 - 01:40 PM

Home Boys Home.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: kendall
Date: 26 Jan 10 - 01:48 PM

Porter Waggoner sang one titled Jeannie's Afraid of the dark. A real tear jerker. My ex used to call these songs emotional rape.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Amergin
Date: 26 Jan 10 - 02:14 PM

Tom Lehrer's Hold Your Hand In Mine...is such a lovely sentiment, makes me blubber every time.


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Subject: Lyr Add: MY SON JOHN (Tom Paxton)
From: Don Firth
Date: 26 Jan 10 - 05:08 PM

Bob (Deckman) Nelson and I rarely do "cause" songs, so when we do, it generally has a fair impact on our regular audiences. When we put the program together for our reunion concert in October of 2007, we scheduled two songs toward the end of the program. Just go right into them without introductions and then say nothing afterward, just let the songs speak for themselves.

I was going to sing
The Green Fields of France
(No Man's Land)
(Words and Music by Eric Bogle)

Well, how do you do, young Willie McBride,
Do you mind if I sit here down by your graveside?
And rest for awhile in the warm summer sun
I've been walking all day, and I'm nearly done.

Well, I see by your gravestone, you were only nineteen
When you joined the great fallen in nineteen-sixteen
Well I hope you died quickly, and I hope you died clean
Or poor Willie Mcbride, was it slow and obscene?

CHO:
Did they beat the drums slowly? Did they play the fife lowly?
Did they play the dead march as they lowered you down?
Did the band play 'The Last Post' in chorus?
Did the pipes play 'The Flowers of the Forest'?

Did you leave a young wife or a sweetheart behind?
In that loving heart are you forever enshrined?
And although you died back in nineteen-sixteen
In that faithful heart are you always nineteen?

Or are you a stranger without even a name
And closed in forever behind some glass pane,
In an old photograph, torn and tattered, and stained,
All faded and yellow in a brown leather frame.?
CHO:

The sun shines bright on the green fields of France
The warm summer breeze makes the red poppies dance
The trenches have vanished long under the plow
There's no gas, no barb wire, there's no guns firing now

But here in this graveyard, it's still no-man's land.
The countless white crosses stand mute in the sand,
To man's blind indifference to his fellow man
And a whole generation all butchered and damned
CHO:

I can't help but wonder, young Willie McBride
Do those that lie here know why that they died?
Did they really believe when they answered the call,
Did they really believe that this war would end wars?

Well, the sorrow, the suffering, the glory, the pain
And the killing and dying were all done in vain.
For young Willy McBride it all happened again:
And again, and again, and again, and again...

CHO:
Did they beat the drum slowly? Did they play the fife lowly?
Did they play the dead march as they lowered you down?
Did the band play 'The Last Post' in chorus?
Did the pipes play 'The Flowers of the Forest'?
And Bob was going to follow with
My Son John
Words and Music by Tom Paxton

My son, John, was a good boy, and good to me.
When we had hard times, well, he stood by me.
We were in work and out of work and on the go.
If he had complaints, I never heard of one.
He would pitch in and help me like a full grown man.
My son, John. John, my son.

My son, John, went to college and he made his way.
Had to earn every penny, but he paid his way.
He worked summers and holidays and through the year,
And it was no easy struggle that he won.
But he laughed at the ones who thought he had it hard.
My son, John. John, my son.

My son, John, got his uniform and went away.
With a band playing marches, he was sent away.
And he wrote me a letter, when he had the time.
He was loosing his buddies one by one.
And I prayed, and tried not to read between the lines.
My son, John. John, my son.

My son, John, came home yesterday; he's here to stay.
Not a word, to his father, have I heard him say.
He seems glad to be home, but I can't be sure.
When I ask him what he'd seen and done.
He went up to his bedroom, and he closed the door.
My son, John, John my son.
He went up to his bedroom, and he closed the door.
My son, John, John my son.
I'm afraid I had to wimp out. As we approached this part of the program, I knew I could never get through "The Green Fields of France" without getting severely choked up, especially knowing what Bob was going to follow it with. So I just whispered to Bob, "I can't do it!" He understood, nodded, and went into "My Son John."

Very effective song, which he did very well, and the message undoubtedly got across. Actually, the two together like that might have been a bit too much.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: kendall
Date: 26 Jan 10 - 05:17 PM

That line...and it all happened again, and again, and again gets to me evrytime.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,Johnmc
Date: 26 Jan 10 - 05:21 PM

"There but for Fortune" because of the writer's great humanity.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Don Firth
Date: 26 Jan 10 - 05:24 PM

Yeah, that's the point where I probably would have lost it, if I hadn't before that.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GRex
Date: 27 Jan 10 - 04:35 AM

For me it's 'The Last of The Great Whales' (The Last Leviathan)    by Andy Barnes.

                GRex


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Bryn Pugh
Date: 27 Jan 10 - 04:45 AM

Although it is not strictly a folk song, and I am not a christian, the hymn "Be Thou my Vision" has me in tears every time alike.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,Johnmc
Date: 27 Jan 10 - 05:04 AM

Yes, Bryn - isn't it an old Gaelic melody which might account for it ?


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Bryn Pugh
Date: 27 Jan 10 - 05:13 AM

Possibly, Mac, but in "Ancient & Modern" the tune is "Slane", composed 1913.

A close variant is the tune to "Banks of the Bann".


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 28 Jan 10 - 02:44 AM

'Willie More': esp the version which ends "The last heard of him he was in Montreal, Where he died of a broken heart", the precision of which I find peculiarly poignant for some reason.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,Sapper in the Far North
Date: 28 Jan 10 - 06:11 AM

Home, Lads, Home.

Took me several months of practice to be able to sing it and occasionally I still crack up.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,Mr Red
Date: 28 Jan 10 - 06:16 AM

"The Ladies go Dancing at Whitsun"

It has resonances with family stories for me. Never met the lady, but she lost her boyfriend in the Great War, married late in life, lost her pension as a result and he died within 18 months. Never met the lady.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Micca
Date: 28 Jan 10 - 06:31 AM

Breaking up while trying to sing? How about this, theres a song (It hasnt got a complete tune yet,) I can't even READ without breaking up!! And I wrote it!!! It came about in a curious way, MMario and I were both looking for the words of a song mentioned in a series of books we had both read in which only the chorus was ever given, after much searching we concluded that that was all there was and someone would have to write the rest of the song. I had a try , I dont know where I got what came out on the paper but it was and is scary, someday maybe we will get a tune and a bridge for the verses, I know how the tune for the chorus goes but ssome time will need the tune for the verse and bridge.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Smedley
Date: 28 Jan 10 - 07:09 AM

I only sing at home (and usually at home alone!) but songs I listen to that have a hotline to the tear-ducts include some already mentioned (ATBPWaltzing Matilda, Who Knows Where the Time Goes) and some I don't think I've seen here so far:

Someday Soon - writtemn by Ian Tyson, but the Suzy Bogguss version because it was one of my late Dad's favourites

Carry Me Home by Hem

O Holy Night (at Christmas, and I'm an atheist!)

Shipbuilding, as sung by Robert Wyatt

Bay of Biscay, the Waterson Carthy version


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: AllisonA(Animaterra)
Date: 28 Jan 10 - 07:47 AM

GUEST, Gerrry wrote I never had any trouble listening to Tam Lin until someone on the radio (I think it was Phyl Lobl) explained that the bit about holding on to Tam Lin even when the fairy queen turns him into red hot iron and such is about what we have to do in our relationships with those we love even when they are acting their most unloveable. Now it's hard for me to listen to that part of the song without breaking up, and I wouldn't try singing it.

My DH and I named our land "Tam Lin" before we had met, before we bought it, because even on the phone we knew we had found the one whom we would hold on to and never let go, no matter what. We play the contra tune "Tam Lin" but have never attempted adding the ballad to our repertoire, for the tear ducts factor!

Songs I can't get through that I DO sometimes try to perform:
"Morningtown Ride" by Malvina Reynolds (nostalgia for my babies, I think)
"All that I am" by John Simmons
"Blessed Quietness" beloved of my late beloved, Byron
and yep, "Be thou my vision", because of Byron, again.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: AllisonA(Animaterra)
Date: 28 Jan 10 - 07:48 AM

...although the Episcopalian/Anglican words, "Lord of all hopefulness" do me in even more than Be thou my vision. What is it about that melody??


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Pistachio
Date: 28 Jan 10 - 05:57 PM

'For Those in Peril on the Sea', a favourite of my Dads - that we sang at his funeral,
'The Farewell Shanty', that I first heard sung by The Shellbacks,
'Luckiest Sailor' by Linda Kelly (about the loss of the Kingston Peridot,Hull 1968)
Eric Bogle - And the band played Waltzing matilda, Leaving Nancy and Rosies eyes,
Rosemarys sister - and many other War related songs
and
Sky Sailor by Geoff Lawes.
I honestly wouldn't try to sing Eric's songs or Rosemarys sister and I have cried while singing all the others. I am human!
I can even be reduced to tears by a crowd of singers in full flow, it's so theraputic to get immersed in songs and most of those named in earlier posts will stir emotions that should be permitted to rise.
Hazel.x


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Bert
Date: 28 Jan 10 - 06:25 PM

Ariseli

A         D               A
Sleep softly my pretty one
             E7
Sleep softly my darling
          A                                     E7
You promised a happiness that only you could bring
          D                   A
You came for a moment
       E7                     A
and then you were gone
E7                            A          E7 A
Faded away like a snowflake in spring
            D                A
Sleep softly my pretty one
                   E7   A
Sleep softly my love


Copyright Bert Hansell, 2004


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 04:24 AM

One more, from the religious category.

My family were Christian, but fairly sceptical Anglicans; I've never believed in the virgin birth. But when I get to the last couplet of 'I sing of a maiden that is makeles' -

Mother and maiden was never none but she

...it gets me every time. Powerful stuff.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Sean Mc
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 08:31 AM

Roses in December by Ian Walker - took me 2 years to get that out in public.
"He's dead, he's dead rang round my head, an empty, aching sound"

Also, Some Hae Meat by Ian Walker
"To weak to eat, they've got no meat – they spend their living dying"

And recently, Empty-handed by George Papavgeris
"So what would happen if I just kept right on walking 'til I disappeared. . . . "


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: oggie
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 08:31 AM

Mike Harding's "Bombers' Moon".

Steve


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 08:48 AM

Looks like my last post (and chorus) of a few days ago has gone missing.

"Rapper to Bank" makes me pretty emotional, hearing it or trying to sing it.

Linn


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,seth from Olympia
Date: 30 Jan 10 - 01:50 AM

every December, when I hear Joni Mitchell singing " I wish I had a river I could skate away on...." I get all wet-eyed. I know that I could never sing that song. My wife gets pretty sad when she hears "Give my Love to Rose" though I will and have sung that to a tavern full of drunks. Shut 'em up for a few minutes,too


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Callie
Date: 30 Jan 10 - 02:45 AM

I agree about that song by George P. I can't even THINK ABOUT it without feeling teary.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Jan 10 - 04:46 AM

Having conducted literally hundreds, or probably thousands, of radio interviews, I failed miserably last week when attempting to interview a member of our local Jewish community at an Ann Frank exhibition. I finished up using a recording by Richard Dimbleby on the liberation of Belsen and wound it up with Eric Bogle singing "Never Again".

I would never be able to sing that song.

Eddie


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: diplocase
Date: 30 Sep 12 - 01:24 PM

Eric Bogle's "Since Nancy Died"
Bob Dylan's "Death is not the End"
Garnet Rogers' "Jenny Bryce" "Harris and the Mare"
Child #106 Border Widow's Lament
Mark Lowry "Mary Did You Know?"
Child #233 "Mill O'Tifty's Annie"
Luther Vandross "Dance with my Father"


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,Eddie1 (Still sans cookie)
Date: 30 Sep 12 - 02:14 PM

Been having a look through this thread and been moved to tears several times. Thanks for sharing your feelings folks. I see way back when, I posted my feelings about "Lonely One" by Finbar Furey an "Sonny's Dream".
I can sing both of these without too much difficulty nowadays but one song I find it difficult to even talk about is "As If He Knows" by Eric Bogle once more. Won't tell the whole history of the song - you can look it up - but basically it's about each man in The Australian Light Horse in Palestine during WWI, shooting his best friend's horse so no-one had to shoot their own steed.
I will be playing this in November for Remembrance Sunday on my radio show and I'm worried already but It's still well worth playing.

Eddie


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: John J
Date: 30 Sep 12 - 02:26 PM

Dancing at Whitsun
Rosemary's Sister
Home lads home

JJ


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Rumncoke
Date: 30 Sep 12 - 04:35 PM

Manchester Rambler


I have seen the white hare in the gully and the curlew fly


and there I get hit by such a longing for home it usually stops me dead.

Anne


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Brian May
Date: 30 Sep 12 - 04:52 PM

Carrying Nelson Home by Mike O'Connor and sung by Martyn Wyndham-Read.

How Martyn sings that, I just don't know, I couldn't.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Joe_F
Date: 30 Sep 12 - 05:49 PM

White Squall.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 30 Sep 12 - 08:07 PM

For me, especially while I was learning it, Jez Lowe's "The last of the widows"

Kitty


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Leadfingers
Date: 30 Sep 12 - 10:21 PM

I am now old and cynical enough to get through just about anything I want to sing though there several songs that friends sing that DO grab me .
   My Ex sent me a birthday card "From your own Gibson Girl" just after I included Bill Caddick's song in my regular Rep that has some
serious connection , and one of my uncles who was the sort of guy who
would go out of his way to help a friend or neighbour is always in my mind when I sing Pete Bond's 'Joe Peel'


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: gnu
Date: 30 Sep 12 - 10:45 PM

Terry... "songs that friends sing that DO grab me."

Same for me. When a buddy of mine sings "And The Band Played Waltzing Matilda" I weep. Every time. At least once a year.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Bobert
Date: 30 Sep 12 - 11:17 PM

Cryin'??? Not exactly but close...

Blind Lemon Jefferson's song "One Kind Favor" which all but predicts how he would would die...

"My heart stopped beating and my hands turned cold
My heart stopped beating and my hands turned cold
Now I believe what the Bible told..."

Blind Lemon froze to death at age 32 on the streets of Chicago...

B~


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: ollaimh
Date: 01 Oct 12 - 12:08 AM

kilkelly ireland, as sung by mick maloney, the irish american folklorist. a song based on several generations of letters from an orosh famioly to their son who immigrated to america never to return.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: theleveller
Date: 01 Oct 12 - 06:39 AM

It's almost exactly six years since I heard of the death of my old friend, author, film maker, environmentalist and wild swimmer, Roger Deakin, and wrote a song in memory of him. It took only a few minutes to write but I've never been able to sing it all the way through, so mrsleveller has to sing it:

The Swimmer


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,highlandman at work
Date: 01 Oct 12 - 10:26 AM

I am a bit prone to getting that awful hitch in my voice at times. But for me it's not usually the song itself, but some association I make with it. Over the years I've learned that I can, with time, get the song back.
Presently I have "Parting Glass" and "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot" on my no-sing list, having sung them for a dying friend. I consider the temporary loss of a song a small price to pay for having shared those moments with him and his wife.
Now, Mrs. Highlandman, while not a cold person at all, has the most amazing control of her voice and can infallibly sing through tears. In my case it's the voice that cuts out first.
-Glenn


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: mayomick
Date: 01 Oct 12 - 10:42 AM

That song about the baby going down the plughole always gets me.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Gurney
Date: 01 Oct 12 - 04:12 PM

I've sung many of the songs here, but one that I'd never attempt is the English trad. 'The Life of a Man.'
Funny how some get to you, isn't it.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: KT
Date: 01 Oct 12 - 05:34 PM

theleveller, I didn't know your friend, but that is a lovely song.
KT


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,Joi
Date: 01 Oct 12 - 07:00 PM

"Danny Boy" because it makes me so sad. I can mostly keep it together until the part where the parent is talking about if Danny should return after the parent dies and then I just burst out crying every time. This has happened all of my life. Others can sing "Danny Boy" with so much happiness and others can sing it with reverence. I sing it with tears.

"Irish Lullaby" because it is so sweet. I used to sing it when I was a singing waitress at an Irish restaurant in Portland, Oregon. The customers always loved it. Whenever I sang it for sweet, elderly ladies, they always had a tear in their eyes while they smiled at me. Later on, I always taught that song in my music classes at school. I can sing it without crying, but have always held a soft spot in my heart for those little old ladies.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,999
Date: 01 Oct 12 - 07:10 PM

I have difficulty with "Last Trip Home" written by Davy Steele and John McCusker.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Rob Naylor
Date: 02 Oct 12 - 03:40 AM

One that gets me every time is MacColl's "The Joy Of Living". It'll be sung at my funeral but I've never been able to sing it myself without choking up. Sometimes I can't even hear it. A friend I was travelling up to Wales with to climb Glyder Fach put it on my car's CD (I think she thought the lyrics would be "appropriate"!). I was driving along with tears streaming and eventually had to pull over and stop. She was astounded as she'd never considered me as someone who might cry "in public".

Another one that gets me (I can sing it but have to be very careful not to choke up) is "Poverty Knock"...in particular the verse "Sometimes a shuttle flies aht, and gi's sum poor woman a claht". My mum, a former mill girl, used to sing this to me when I was a toddler, way before it was "released" as a recording. She had a huge scar on her head where she'd been hit by a shuttle, another one on her arm and 2 badly set fingers that had also been broken by an escaping shuttle.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: theleveller
Date: 02 Oct 12 - 03:56 AM

"theleveller, I didn't know your friend, but that is a lovely song."

Thanks, KT, he was a lovely man and his two books, 'Waterlog' and 'Wildwood' are a joy.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Shimbo Darktree
Date: 02 Oct 12 - 08:50 AM

Top of the list: Eric Bogle's "The Enigma"
Also "The Letter Edged in Black", although I've done it enough to become used to it. Other songs from around that time also get me, like "I Want a Pardon for Daddy" and "The Lightning Express".
Kevin Baker's "Snowy River Men" is sometimes a problem.

-Shimbo


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: mayomick
Date: 02 Oct 12 - 09:20 AM

The Ugly Duckling makes me very weepy as well. And Little White Bull by Tommy Steele of course .Both compositions are tragic in their different ways, but at the same time they both deal with eternal themes: trial ,redemption and renewal .


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST
Date: 02 Oct 12 - 09:49 AM

Garnet Rogers' "Jenny Bryce" "Harris and the Mare"

As Garnet would tell you, "Jenny Bryce was written by James Keelaghan and "Harris and the Mare" by Stan Rogers.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: ranger1
Date: 02 Oct 12 - 10:01 AM

Dave Carter's "When I Go", I sang it when we waked my dad and I can't sing that last verse without tears.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Fred Maslan
Date: 02 Oct 12 - 11:03 AM

Jutland
The Streets of london


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Bill D
Date: 02 Oct 12 - 11:57 AM

Rob Naylor... I occasionally sing "Poverty Knock", (though local Mudcatter Carly does it better than I). I will never hear it again without the poignancy of your memories reminding me just how real those images were.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Rob Naylor
Date: 02 Oct 12 - 12:25 PM

BillD: Thanks. I hope it doesn't spoil it for you!

The rest of that verse is about the fact that the weavers were on piece-work, so nobody could *afford* to "heed" anyone who was injured, or to help carry them out. You got hit and you either got yourself "off t' floor" to get the injury seen to, or if knocked out you lay there until you either came to, or there was a shift change or break, or, if you were lucky, a tuner came to help you between jobs.

When my mum was hit on the head, she was lucky. She had 4 sisters working at adjacent looms and Gracie, the youngest, shut down and went to help her. They were all still at home at that time and there was enough coming in that they could afford to lose an hour of one sister's production time.

A scary thing as youngsters was that all my aunts on both sides of the family could lip-read perfectly, from great distances. They had to learn due to the noise, and could hold long, complicated, but silent, conversations. Family "dos" could be quite entertaining, with the older womenfolk chattering away silently to each other without the men or we kids having a clue what they were saying! The downside was that if we swore in the street, for instance, even 20 yards away from the window, they might "hear" and give us a clip round the ear when we got in.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: kendall
Date: 02 Oct 12 - 02:14 PM

I was finally able to get through reciting "Carrying Nelson Home" at the Getaway.


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Subject: Lyr Add: CRANES OVER HIROSHIMA (Fred Small)
From: saulgoldie
Date: 03 Oct 12 - 11:09 AM

"Cranes Over Hiroshima" by Fred Small
I heard it done by a duo called "Two of a Kind"


        Cranes Over Hiroshima
        By Fred Small

The baby blinks her eye, as the sun falls from the sky,
She feels the sting of a thousand fires, as the city around her dies.
Some sleep beneath the rubble, some wake to a different world,
From the crying babe will grow a laughing girl.

Ten summers fade to Autumn, ten winters' snows have passed,
She's a child of dreams and dances, she's a racer strong and fast.
But the headaches come ever more often, and the dizziness always returns,
And the word she hears is leukemia, and it burns.

chorus:

Cranes over Hiroshima, white and red and gold,
Flicker in the sunlight, like a million vanished souls.
I will fold the cranes of paper, to a thousand one by one.
And I'll fly away, when I am done.

Her ancestors knew the legend, if you make a thousand cranes.
From squares of colored paper, it will take away the pain.
With loving hands she folds them, 644
Till the morning her trembling hands can't fold anymore.

cho.

Her friend did not forget her, crane after crane they made,
Until they reached a thousand, and they laid them on her grave.
People from everywhere gathered, and together a prayer they said,
And they wrote the words in granite so none may forget.

This is our cry, this is our prayer, peace in the world.


Still working on getting alltheway through it. Perseverance, my boy.

Saul


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Tiger
Date: 03 Oct 12 - 01:44 PM

I guess I wouldn't have gotten so carried away with this list if you hadn't hit my soft spot - this kind of song has always suckered me in. I'm really a happy guy, though. These are ones from my collection. There are probably lots more, but if they grab me, I grab 'em. The 1 to 5 scale is how they hit me - I'd be interested in your comments.

Tearfully.......Tiger


The Randall Knife - Guy Clark
I put this in a special category, 'cause so many people have mentioned it. This song must be heard live to be properly awed, although the CD version is fine. Guy unplugs his guitar and moves to the front of the stage (or whatever) to sing solo, as close to the audience as he can get. You'll not hear a footfall or a tinkling ice cube during this song, I gar-own-tee it. It's difficult to express the feelings (maybe 'thunderstruck'?).

Industrial Strength Tear-jerkers (4 Stars)
And the Band Played Waltzing Matilda
No Man's Land
The Old Man
The Massacre of Glencoe
The Wind that Shakes the Barley
Deportee

3-Star Lachrymators
Old Shep
The Dutchman
The Faded Coat of Blue
Tecumseh Valley
Annie's Going to Sing Her Song
There Were Roses

I Think I Can, I Think I Can (2 Stars)
Cornflower Blue
Ballad of Springhill
Urge for Going
Another Time and Place
I Wonder if They Ever Think of Me
He Was a Friend of Mine
Lili Marlene
The Rose
Cindy's Cryin'
Fort Worth Blues
For the Sake of the Song
The Town that I Loved So Well
Streets of London
Vincent
Old Uncle Ned
Danny Boy

I Get Misty (1 Star)
Loch Tay Boat Song
Till We Meet Again
Lovely Derry On The Banks Of The Foyle
Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald
Long, Long Time
Seven Spanish Angels
Just a Country Dream
Macushla
Mother Machree
On the Banks of the Wabash, Far Away
Me and Bobby McGee
Green Green Grass of Home
Shifting Whispering Sands
Ballad of Ira Hayes
Adelita
Turning Toward the Morning
Three Score and Ten
Coward of the County
Bird on a Wire
Coat of Many Colors
Darling Nelly Gray
What's Your Mamma's Name
Where the River Shannon Flows
Wild Montana Skies

Not sad, but teary anyway
Christian Island
Amazing Grace
Battle Hymn of the Republic
Morning Has Broken
Song for the Mira
Roseville Fair
Island in the Sun
The Mary Ellen Carter

Just can't leave out my teen tragedy medley
Ebony Eyes
Teen Angel
Patches
Tell Laura I Love Her
Running Bear


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,999
Date: 03 Oct 12 - 03:09 PM

We must have had similar things get to us all through life. At least half your list resonates with me, and I laughed at the end where you listed teen tragedy songs. The only one I haven't heard and angst-ed over is Ebony Eyes.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Tiger
Date: 03 Oct 12 - 04:51 PM

My life has, fortunately, been free of hardship, despair and tragedy.

It's just that music really gets to me, and a good percentage of my repertoire is sentimental or sad.

But, I'm not (sad, anyway).


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Beer
Date: 03 Oct 12 - 11:34 PM

That is some list Tiger. Two which I have difficulty with are "Coat of Many Colors" and the second one I just can't sing is "Old Shep".

One that is not on your list which I have a very difficult time with is a Garnet Rogers song titled "Stars in Their Crown".
Adrien

P.S. Good thread Suibhne O'Piobaireachd


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 04 Oct 12 - 03:32 AM

Tiger - "Not sad, but teary anyway" is an interesting category. I find I'm much more likely to cry at an uplifting song like The Mary Ellen Carter than an ostensibly sad one. Add the effects of over-exposure (and I find some songs get over-exposed quite quickly) and an awful lot of the songs on your list leave me dry-eyed.

Lal Waterson's Child among the Weeds has me in bits if I ever try to sing it, even around the house. Sydney Carter's Every Star Shall Sing a Carol likewise, not to mention Friday Morning with its devastating chorus/punchline -

"It's God they ought to crucify instead of you and me,"
I said to the carpenter, hanging on the tree


Peter Bellamy's Us Poor Fellows and The Leaves in the Woodland both need a few run-throughs before I can complete them.

Traditional songs don't affect me like that when I come to sing them. There are some powerfully affecting lines in some of them -

Send for the doctor although it's too late

Had I lived I might have been clever

And every stitch she put in it, the tears came trinkling down

I have lost a sheath and knife that I'll never see again

But they don't hang about - you sing the line, you tell the story, and then you move on to the next line and the next bit of the story. When I sing The Unfortunate Lass or The Trees They Do Grow High I'm in the song, with no chance to reflect on it until it's finished; I don't find that to be the case with contemporary songs.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,PatrickH
Date: 04 Oct 12 - 12:00 PM

Hamish Henderson's John MacLean March


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,jood
Date: 04 Oct 12 - 07:12 PM

Across the evening sky, all the birds are leaving
But how can they know it's time for them to go?
Before the winter fire, I will still be dreaming
I have no thought of time
For who knows where the time goes?
Who knows where the time goes?
Sad, deserted shore, your fickle friends are leaving
Ah, but then you know it's time for them to go
But I will still be here, I have no thought of leaving
I do not count the time
For who knows where the time goes?
Who knows where the time goes?
And I am not alone while my love is near me
I know it will be so until it's time to go
So come the storms of winter and then the birds in spring again
I have no fear of time
For who knows how my love grows?
And who knows where the time goes?


No contest!


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Musket
Date: 05 Oct 12 - 07:33 AM

On Xmas Eve, my step Dad used to get in from the club and once sat in his chair with a whisky, for some reason always starting crooning out "Old Shep"

As a teenager with a few beers in me too, I used to go all melancholy and not look forward to the final verses. "Oh no, not the gun!" I used to pretend I was taking the piss, but looking back, I used to get upset....

These days, I like to think I don't get upset by music. However, my Mum used to love listening to Jim Reeves and a few weeks ago, "Welcome to my World" came on BBC Radio 2. Sobbed my bloody heart out. Rather amazed I just shared that...


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST
Date: 05 Oct 12 - 05:12 PM

"When the Roses Bloom Again Beside the River" has always brought a tear to my eye. I'm unsure about the title but it involves a love between a young lass and her soldier lover who does not return home from the war. Another one is "Will the flowers Bloom in Heaven?" and a third one is "Put my Little Shoes Away." Strange as it may seem, I love to sing (or try to!) these tear jerker songs.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST
Date: 05 Oct 12 - 05:18 PM

Rats! The post on Oct.5 at 5:12 P.M. is from me, Topical Tom. I lost my cookie again.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST
Date: 06 Oct 12 - 02:12 AM

The flowers of Manchester. A song written in 1958 about Manchester United's Munich air crash


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST,eldergirl
Date: 29 Jul 13 - 10:46 AM

Have just read thru this thread, sniffling as I go..
Songs I doubt I could get through. Quite a few, but for starters;
Home, lads, home
Mollymauk (I LOVE it tho')
Anderson's coast (ditto)
Jonny and Vicki singing Follow Me Home.
Pete Ryder's 'Where the Lion Stands'.
But oddly enough I can sing right through the song I know as 'I come and stand at every door'.
Nowt so queer as folk, eh?


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Goodboyshep
Date: 29 Jul 13 - 11:41 AM

I know it's the folk club equivalent of Stairway to Heaven, but "The band played WM" - I actually used to be unable to get through to the end. I'm more insensitive nowadays.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Jul 13 - 12:11 PM

David Francey's powerful remembrance of sacrificed soldiers, in Flowers of Saskatchewan.

Love the song, took a long time to present it without breaking down.

It reminded me of my own father who was a Canadian soldier away in Europe for 4 years in WW2....I met him for the first time when I was four years old.


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Jul 13 - 12:18 PM

Joe Peel for me, as well as He was Good with His Hands and Leader of the Band. Anyone else for Joe Peel? Or is it just me?


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Bill D
Date: 29 Jul 13 - 12:21 PM

I have posted several times in the last several years to this thread... and I can't imagine how I left out this one: (hearing Bruce Phillips sing it is... ummm... an experience.

ENOLA GAY
(Utah Phillips)

Look out, look out from your schoolroom window!
Look up, young children, from your play!
Wave your hand at the shining airplane,
Such a beautiful sight is Enola Gay.

High above the clouds in the sunlit silence,
So peaceful here, I'd like to stay.
There's many a pilot who'd swap his pension
For a chance to fly Enola Gay.

What is that sound high above my city?
I rush outside and search the sky.
Now we are running to find the shelters,
Hearing sirens start to cry.

What will I say when my children ask me,
Where was I flying up on that day?
With trembling voice I gave the order
To the bombardier of Enola Gay.

Look out, look out from your schoolroom window;
Look up, young children, from your play.
Your bright young eyes will turn to ashes
In the blinding light of Enola Gay.

I turn to see the fireball rising.
"My God, My God," all I can say.
I hear a voice within me crying,
"My mother's name was Enola Gay."

Look out, look out from your schoolroom window;
Look up, young children, from your play.
Oh, when you see the warplanes flying,
Each one is named Enola Gay.

@war @peace @airplane
filename[ ENOLAGAY
DS


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Subject: RE: Songs You Can't Sing for Crying
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 29 Jul 13 - 03:16 PM

There are some that reached me through family and personal events:
when my mother was in her final downward spiral through dementia, there was one of Tommy Sands' songs in which he described his own mother's struggle with it. Also "The Joy of Living" got to me then, and still does to some extent.
After she died in 2002, it was Eric Bogle's "Belle of Broughton": I couldn't sing it for at least a couple of years after.
Then when my Dad died on Christmas Day 2010, we chose "Crossing the Bar" - Alfred Lord Tennyson's last poem, set to music by Rani Arbo, Craig Morgan and Robson's recording, for his funeral as he had been in the Royal Navy. The nautical imagery just seemed to fit. I'm still struggling to sing it myself, much as I love it.
On a less "close to home" note, but yet something everyone in the world felt, Tom Paxton's "The Bravest" for 9/11.


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