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Songs about 'crossing over'

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Genie 18 Jun 06 - 11:30 PM
GrassStains 18 Jun 06 - 11:53 PM
Genie 19 Jun 06 - 01:03 AM
greg stephens 19 Jun 06 - 03:48 AM
Anne Lister 19 Jun 06 - 04:59 AM
GUEST,Jack Campin 19 Jun 06 - 06:23 AM
GUEST 19 Jun 06 - 07:09 AM
Dave Hanson 19 Jun 06 - 07:12 AM
BuckMulligan 19 Jun 06 - 08:02 AM
JedMarum 19 Jun 06 - 10:05 AM
Genie 19 Jun 06 - 05:26 PM
JedMarum 19 Jun 06 - 06:58 PM
Genie 19 Jun 06 - 11:50 PM
Genie 20 Jun 06 - 12:46 AM
Genie 20 Jun 06 - 01:25 AM
Genie 20 Jun 06 - 01:37 AM
freda underhill 20 Jun 06 - 07:40 AM
Genie 20 Jun 06 - 01:13 PM
Mo the caller 20 Jun 06 - 02:27 PM
Ebbie 20 Jun 06 - 03:08 PM
Phil Cooper 20 Jun 06 - 03:33 PM
Scoville 20 Jun 06 - 04:01 PM
GUEST,Arkie 20 Jun 06 - 05:22 PM
MoorleyMan 21 Jun 06 - 04:27 AM
GUEST,Uncle Jaque 21 Jun 06 - 06:11 AM
GUEST,Uncle Jaque 21 Jun 06 - 06:14 AM
GUEST,Uncle Jaque 21 Jun 06 - 06:43 AM
GUEST,UJ (Again...) 21 Jun 06 - 07:50 AM
GUEST,UJ (1 More Time...) 21 Jun 06 - 08:10 AM
Mrs_Annie 21 Jun 06 - 09:13 AM
Goldengob 21 Jun 06 - 09:45 AM
JedMarum 21 Jun 06 - 12:23 PM
dwditty 21 Jun 06 - 12:29 PM
Margret RoadKnight 21 Jun 06 - 09:09 PM
Artful Codger 21 Jun 06 - 09:11 PM
Scoville 21 Jun 06 - 09:50 PM
Artful Codger 21 Jun 06 - 10:03 PM
Mark Clark 21 Jun 06 - 11:50 PM
freda underhill 22 Jun 06 - 01:20 AM
Pauline L 22 Jun 06 - 01:31 AM
Ebbie 22 Jun 06 - 02:22 AM
Genie 22 Jun 06 - 04:47 AM
Charmain 22 Jun 06 - 04:59 AM
bfdk 22 Jun 06 - 06:14 AM
GUEST,Pelrad 22 Jun 06 - 08:05 AM
JedMarum 22 Jun 06 - 08:43 AM
Ebbie 22 Jun 06 - 10:54 AM
Genie 22 Jun 06 - 03:43 PM
Genie 22 Jun 06 - 04:13 PM
Artful Codger 22 Jun 06 - 09:08 PM
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Subject: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Genie
Date: 18 Jun 06 - 11:30 PM

I've tried doing some topical searches for songs to celebrate a loved one's life when they pass on.   I am looking for songs that celebrate the continuity of life, including, I guess, songs about heaven or reincarnation, but in particular, songs that you might use for a service celebrating the life of a departed loved one.

Some that come to mind are:
Crossing The Bar - Tennyson
Crossing The Water - Staines
River - Staines
Sing With The Angels - Rick Fielding
Angel Band - Traditional Gospel (?)
Wayfaring Stranger
This World Is Not My Home
Give Yourself To Love


and a new song I recently discovered called "Flyin' Shoes" by California singer-songwriter Terry Pinnegar.   (I will post those lyrics if I get permission from Mr. Pinnegar).

I'm starting this thread because folk music has a gazillion songs about war, murder, tragic death, ghosts, and all sorts of depressing songs on the subject of death. There are also funny or sem-comical songs about wakes and hell and heaven. Those are not what I'm looking for here, and I thought it might be faster to ask for your suggestions than to sift through the entire catalog.

What are some songs you've found comforting in times of trouble, suffering, or the passing of someone close to you?


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: GrassStains
Date: 18 Jun 06 - 11:53 PM

"O Sing to Me of Heaven" is a beauty. (I first heard it on the CD Come All you Tenderhearted by Ginny Hawker and Kay Justice). There's also "You've Got to Cross that Lonesome Valley" (the Richard Dyer Bennett version is wonderful). Robin and Linda Williams recorded "Let us Cross Over the River," a lovely song, though I don't know for sure that they wrote it (can't find my CD at the moment).

Carol


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Genie
Date: 19 Jun 06 - 01:03 AM

Thanks, Grass,
I guess I should post the link to the thread that has the lyrics and Rani Arbo's singable version of Crossing The Bar .


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: greg stephens
Date: 19 Jun 06 - 03:48 AM

Deep River and Swing Low Sweet Chariot are two classics. They both use crossing the Jordan into the promised land as a metaphor for death.


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Anne Lister
Date: 19 Jun 06 - 04:59 AM

My song "Spreading Rings" was written for my grandmother and has been used in many funerals since then. I've been told by a company who runs humanist and secular funerals that it's useful to have a song which doesn't have a religious theme, for those who don't have a religious outlook (or didn't).

Anne (Lister)


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: GUEST,Jack Campin
Date: 19 Jun 06 - 06:23 AM

The Lyke-Wake Dirge?


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: GUEST
Date: 19 Jun 06 - 07:09 AM

"Farther along"

"Will the circle be unbroken"


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 19 Jun 06 - 07:12 AM

Old Shep.

eric


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: BuckMulligan
Date: 19 Jun 06 - 08:02 AM

Brumley's "I'll Fly Away" is terrific.


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: JedMarum
Date: 19 Jun 06 - 10:05 AM

I have a few such songs - talking about the experience of passing from this life to beyond or about the afterlife:

Banks of the Mobile

Prayer from Little Round Top

Chickahominy River


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Genie
Date: 19 Jun 06 - 05:26 PM

Thanks, folks.

Thanks for those links, Jed. Now that I think of it, you have a song to the tune of Wild Mountain Thyme on one of your CDs that, as I recall, would fit.

Tabster, is your song "Spreading Wings" somewhere where I can hear it?

---
Changing the subject slightly, I'd swear that I posted a reply to greg stephens last night, but my post is not to be found in this thread! Wha hoppen??

I mentioned other old spirituals and trad favorites or hymns such as I'll Fly Away and:
In The Sweet By And By
Shall We Gather At The River?
Abide With Me
Golden Slippers
When They Ring Those Golden Bells For You And Me

I am especially interested in newer songs and/or lesser-known (than I'll Fly Away and In The Sweet By And By) trad songs.   

We could list Amazing Grace too, because it's sung at so many memorial services, but aside from the "10,000 years" verse, which Newton didn't write, it seems more a general hymn, and I really wish people wouldn't use it for funerals so much that the public thinks of it as a dirge. (OK, off soapbox.) :-)

I guess I should add Kate Wolf's "Across The Great Divide," too. I think she wrote it when a close friend was facing death.


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: JedMarum
Date: 19 Jun 06 - 06:58 PM

Yes- my song, Sarah's Mountain Time was written for a friend's funeral. I don;t have it on MP3 though ... maybe I can do that, if you'd like.


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Genie
Date: 19 Jun 06 - 11:50 PM

I have that album of yours, Jed. It's great!

Are your lyrics posted here at the 'Cat?   If not, would you be willing to post them?


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Genie
Date: 20 Jun 06 - 12:46 AM

Here's another one, which is on the Mudcat CD: Orchid

It's by Kim Caudell (Kim C.) and it's called "(The) Last Letter Home."
Refrain: By a cord stronger than death, my love, by a cord stronger than death,
             Remember our sweetest affections are bound by a cord stronger than death.


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Genie
Date: 20 Jun 06 - 01:25 AM

Good cross-reference thread:
Irish Songs For Funeral


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Genie
Date: 20 Jun 06 - 01:37 AM

I started this thread because I couldn't find the kinds of songs I was looking for by searching for @death or @funeral or @inspiration or @reincarnation or @heaven or any other terms I could come up with. But I finally found a thread that links several sort of related threads together;

Memorial Service Threads

This one is probably one of the closest of the ones linked to in that thread:
Funeral Songs That Heal


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: freda underhill
Date: 20 Jun 06 - 07:40 AM

"If You See My Savior"

I was standing by the bedside of a neighbor
Who was just about the cross the swelling tide
I asked if he would do me a favor
Kindly take this message to the other side

If you see my Savior tell him that you saw me
That you saw me
And when you saw me, I was on my way
Yes, Lord, my way
You may meet some friends who, yeah, may ask about me
Tell them I, I'm coming home one day...


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Genie
Date: 20 Jun 06 - 01:13 PM

Thanks, Freda.

Here's one I found in the Obit: George Harrison thread:

The Art Of Dying (George Harrison)


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Mo the caller
Date: 20 Jun 06 - 02:27 PM

Another non-religious song (though based on an Old Testament text.
"What's the life of a man any more than a leaf."


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Ebbie
Date: 20 Jun 06 - 03:08 PM

Here's one I like:

When I come to the river at the ending of day
When the last winds of sorrow have blown
There'll be somebody waiting to show me the way
I won't have to cross Jordan alone

            I won't have to cross Jordan alone
            On my way to my heavenly home
            When the darkness I see, they'll be waiting for me
            And I won't have to cross Jordan alone

Many times I am lonely and I've often been sad
With a heart that is heavy as stone
But there's one thing that cheers me and makes my heart glad
I won't have to cross Jordan alone


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Phil Cooper
Date: 20 Jun 06 - 03:33 PM

Robin Williamson's song Fare Thee Well Sweet Mally.


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Scoville
Date: 20 Jun 06 - 04:01 PM

"Waiting the Boatman"

"It Soon Be Done" (with trouble and trial, when we meet on the other shore . . . )

"Life's Railway to Heaven" has shore references


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: GUEST,Arkie
Date: 20 Jun 06 - 05:22 PM

Sweet Beulah Land by Squire Parsons and
When I Cross Over by Tift Merritt


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: MoorleyMan
Date: 21 Jun 06 - 04:27 AM

At the risk of repeating a music biz cliche, they do say songs on that subject are popular because they have a lot of "crossover appeal"!

But seriously..
Bill Whaley and Dave Fletcher have just started doing a song from the singing of Tommy Fleming (it's actually titled Crossing Over I believe), and it's a cracker - I'll see if I can find out more.


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: GUEST,Uncle Jaque
Date: 21 Jun 06 - 06:11 AM

That last one kinda posted itself before i was done with it... (?)

Try this, from an 1849 endbinder; "Sister Thous Wast Mild and Lovely"

Sister Thou Wast....


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: GUEST,Uncle Jaque
Date: 21 Jun 06 - 06:14 AM

OK, let's try this again, shall we?...

From one of my 19th Century Hymnals; "Going"

"Going"

Bet you havn't heard this one in a while, have ye?


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: GUEST,Uncle Jaque
Date: 21 Jun 06 - 06:43 AM

Now here's an oldie from the "Temple Harmony", published in 1858:


"Parting Soul" from Temple Melodies; 1858


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: GUEST,UJ (Again...)
Date: 21 Jun 06 - 07:50 AM

Now that you've got me rummaging through the collection...

Here's something you don't hear much any more - a Protestant CHANT!;

"Calm On The Bosom of thy God"; 19th Century Funery Chant

And someone mentioned "Weep Not for Me"; This version has a couple of sets of alternative verses, which was not at all uncommon at the time - lyrics and scores were mixed and matched on the fly according to metrical compatability. The score is pretty nondescript IMHO, as a lot of music from this period was - but I do it to the tune of "All Through the Night", which works pretty well.
The chords I worked out by ear and may not be "proper", but they sound OK to me.

"Weep Not For Me"

This is a good excersize in rapid chording, I have found!


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Subject: RE: 'crossing over' to Beulah Land...
From: GUEST,UJ (1 More Time...)
Date: 21 Jun 06 - 08:10 AM

It's been mentioned on this thread and we've discussed it multi-times here over the years, but an old tradition in the mid to later 19th Century was to have the Family gather around the bed of the departing Loved one, and "Sing them Home".

...As I did about 3 1/2 years ago as my Mother lay dying.

   And the song I sang her Home to was this old standby;

"The Land of Beulah" (Angel Band)

(The chord notations are mine, probably don't match the score key, and your milage may vary. I use sort of a waltz time finger-pick style with it.)


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Mrs_Annie
Date: 21 Jun 06 - 09:13 AM

A lovely one is 'The Light on the Shore' by Karine Polwart - makes me cry every time.


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Goldengob
Date: 21 Jun 06 - 09:45 AM

The song "Crossing Over" mentioned by MorleyMan was written by Eric Lowen and Dan Navarro and I found the words struck such a chord after losing someone with just the same outlook as the subject in the song. It was from the singing of Tommy Fleming but his version is much more uptempo. It is combined on the latest WhaleyFletcher album with a terrific song by Beth Nielsen Chapman "I Find Your Love" which gives a very comforting view of how nature reminds us everywhere of those who have "crossed over"
Dave


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: JedMarum
Date: 21 Jun 06 - 12:23 PM

Kim C has done a beautiful job with her LAST LETTER HOME "And remember our sweetest affections are bound by cords stronger than death." I have sung this song for a number of shows, over the years.


I have written another song that fits the "crossing over" subject. It is a Civil War song I wrote from Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson's dying words, and is the title song for a new album I'll release later this year. Here're the lyrics:

CHO:
Let us cross over the river
And sit in the shade of the tress
Let us cross over the river
For the day is done
Let us take our ease

Gone are the racket and rattle
Gentle the glow of the sun
Distant the field of the battle
Contented my work here is done

CHO

My soldiers are tired and weary
They're ragged but their spirits are strong
The years have been bitter and dreary
These hardships they've battled so long

CHO

Many's the home that's been grieved in
For their loved ones I led into war
Fought and died for what they believed in
So many I've brought to this shore

CHO

repeat first verse/CHO except change the last line of the verse to:

Contented His work here is done


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: dwditty
Date: 21 Jun 06 - 12:29 PM

Just A Little WHile - covered by Geoff Muldaur (Secret Handshake CD) (and me).


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Margret RoadKnight
Date: 21 Jun 06 - 09:09 PM

"Well May the World Go" (Pete Seeger)
"Goin' Home" (tune: largo Dvorak's "New World Symphony", words: William Arms Fisher)


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Artful Codger
Date: 21 Jun 06 - 09:11 PM

Bitter Withy:
"So he's built a bridge from the beams of the sun
And over the river danced he,
And those three rich lords followed after him
And drowned they was, all three!"

Well, it was a happy crossing over for the young Jesus. ;-}


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Scoville
Date: 21 Jun 06 - 09:50 PM

"Swing Low, Sweet Chariot"


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Artful Codger
Date: 21 Jun 06 - 10:03 PM

Golden Bells (from a New Christy Minstrels album):
..."I'm going there to meet my mother
Where the good and the righteous gather,
When the gospel ship sails that heavenly sea.
There will be no pain or sorrow
On the bright side of tomorrow
When they ring those golden bells for you and me."


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Mark Clark
Date: 21 Jun 06 - 11:50 PM

One really great song for your purpose is Terry Smith's Far Side of Jordan. The chorus is:
And I'll be waiting on the far side bank of Jordan
I'll be waiting drawing pictures in the sand
And when I see you coming I will rise up with a shout
And come running through the shallow waters reaching for your hand.

June Carter Cash sang a bit of this song in the film, The Apostle. It's highly singable and has a great melody.

The song was recorded by the Cox Family and Alison Krauss on their l995 Grammy-winning project, I Know Who Holds Tomorrow. Johnny and June Carter Cash cut the first version of this song in the seventies, and June also recorded it with Mother Maybelle and her sisters as part of a Carter Family album. In fact, it is the Carter Family version that is used on The Apostle soundtrack CD.

If you don't know this song, check it out. You'll love it.

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: freda underhill
Date: 22 Jun 06 - 01:20 AM

My neighbour has a tape of Marion Williams singing "Mansion Builders" - a beautiful song about "crossing over". It was taken from an old gospel radio show in the 70s, from a record by Marion Williams which is now rare and hard to find.

freda


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Pauline L
Date: 22 Jun 06 - 01:31 AM

I love Lay Down Your Weary Tune, one of the less well known songs by Bob Dylan.

Lay Down Your Weary Tune

Lay down your weary tune, lay down,
Lay down the song you strum,
And rest yourself 'neath the strength of strings
No voice can hope to hum.

Struck by the sounds before the sun,
I knew the night had gone.
The morning breeze like a bugle blew
Against the drums of dawn.
Lay down your weary tune, lay down,
Lay down the song you strum,
And rest yourself 'neath the strength of strings
No voice can hope to hum.

The ocean wild like an organ played,
The seaweed's wove its strands.
The crashin' waves like cymbals clashed
Against the rocks and sands.
Lay down your weary tune, lay down,
Lay down the song you strum,
And rest yourself 'neath the strength of strings
No voice can hope to hum.

I stood unwound beneath the skies
And clouds unbound by laws.
The cryin' rain like a trumpet sang
And asked for no applause.
Lay down your weary tune, lay down,
Lay down the song you strum,
And rest yourself 'neath the strength of strings
No voice can hope to hum.

The last of leaves fell from the trees
And clung to a new love's breast.
The branches bare like a banjo played
To the winds that listened best.

I gazed down in the river's mirror
And watched its winding strum.
The water smooth ran like a hymn
And like a harp did hum.
Lay down your weary tune, lay down,
Lay down the song you strum,
And rest yourself 'neath the strength of strings
No voice can hope to hum.


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Ebbie
Date: 22 Jun 06 - 02:22 AM

Far Side Banks of Jordan is on June Carter Cash and Johnny Cash's CD, Press On. As Mark Clark said, it is a moving song.

On the CD they talk about how they got the song- written by a schoolteacher in New York - and they alternate verses. In the second verse, June sings:

"And if it proves to be His will that I am first to go
And somehow I've a feeling it will be
When it's your turn to go likewise, don't feel lost
For I will be the first one that you see."


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Genie
Date: 22 Jun 06 - 04:47 AM

Flyin' Shoes (Terry Pinnegar) Lyrics & Link


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Charmain
Date: 22 Jun 06 - 04:59 AM

For a non-religious but still lovely option try Fiddlers Green by John Connelly. Often mistaken for a traditional song there are lots of versions out there of this one...


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: bfdk
Date: 22 Jun 06 - 06:14 AM

I like the idea of "still being around" that this song conveys:

Soaring Free
(Eric Bogle / M. Sansom)

Nae need tae cry for me
You only have tae walk
The places that I loved
And there is where I'll be
Nae need tae cry for me

Round autumn's chestnut trees
In Hay Lodge park you'll find me
Dancin' wi' the leaves
Joyous in blustery breeze
Round autumn's chestnut trees

Chorus:
My spirit will soar free
And swoop wi' the swallows
O'er the glitterin' Tweed
As it surges tae the sea
My spirit will soar free
Free - free - free


Wi' winter's mists I'll merge
And swirling nestle
In the shelterin' hills
Where trees and sky converge
Wi' winter's mists I'll merge

And I will be nearby
When pipers swell your heart again
Wi' ancient pride
And Beltane banners fly
Yes I will be nearby

Chorus

So greet nae mair for me
This land was in my blood
And now is in my soul
And there I'll ever be
So greet nae mair for me

Chorus

From the CD "The Colour of Dreams", CDTRAX 237

Best wishes,

Bente


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: GUEST,Pelrad
Date: 22 Jun 06 - 08:05 AM

It isn't folk, and it's a little too strong for a memorial, but my favorite is "Lightning Crashes" by Live.

LIVE LYRICS

"Lightning Crashes"

lightning crashes, a new mother cries
her placenta falls to the floor
the angel opens her eyes
the confusion sets in
before the doctor can even close the door

lightning crashes, an old mother dies
her intentions fall to the floor
the angel closes her eyes
the confusion that was hers
belongs now, to the baby down the hall

oh now feel it comin' back again
like a rollin' thunder chasing the wind
forces pullin' from the center of the earth again
I can feel it.

lightning crashes, a new mother cries
this moment she's been waiting for
the angel opens her eyes
pale blue colored iris,
presents the circle
and puts the glory out to hide, hide


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: JedMarum
Date: 22 Jun 06 - 08:43 AM

Oh - I have another.

An Irish immigrant who was very important to the development of Texas, lived a long and productive life there - married into a Mexican family that he loved - and here are his dying sentiments:

The last rays of daylight still dancing on water
the summer heat rises from Copano Bay
I know as the sun slips below the horizon
I won't see it brighten another day

Come and sit by by side for these moments
My sweet Thomasa you've been good to me
I have donemuch in mylife, that's certain
but my saving grace has been your love for me

CHO:
Con este Beso (with this kiss)
Te digo adios (that says good bye)
Nunca llores por me mi amore (never cry for me my love)
Nunnca te lamentes por me mi amore (never mourn for me my love)
Por que mi alma (for my soul)
Vuela con Dios (flies with God)
En la luz (on the light)
de tu amor (of your love)
sobre las alas (on the wings)
de tu amor (of your love)

Born to the glens of the Barrow and the Liffey
Near Ballygarret on the Irish Sea
Blessed by the love of your South Texas family
My sweet Thomasa you've been good to me

CHO


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Ebbie
Date: 22 Jun 06 - 10:54 AM

What beautiful songs. At any time.


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Genie
Date: 22 Jun 06 - 03:43 PM

bfdk, thanks so much for posting the lyrics and CD info for Eric's song Soaring Free.

That rings so much to the voice of my sister as she was preparing to "fly" and be "free." (Which is why Terry Pinnegar's "Flyin' Shoes" spoke so comfortingly to us too.) I must check out that CD!

Genie


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Subject: Songs about 'crossing over'/Manos, Huesos Y Sangre
From: Genie
Date: 22 Jun 06 - 04:13 PM

Here is another one I love, "Manos, Huesos Y Sangre (Hands, Bones & Blood)" written and recorded by Tish Hinojosa.   I just ordered her "Live from Watermelon" CD, largely for that song (although it has a lot of my favorite Tish songs on it).

"Manos, Huesos Y Sangre (Hands, Bones & Blood)"

www.mundotish.com


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Subject: RE: Songs about 'crossing over'
From: Artful Codger
Date: 22 Jun 06 - 09:08 PM

In that case, there's "I'll Fly Away".


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