rooms in time

Rooms in timemountain refuge cabin

Songs build little rooms in time,
and housed within the song’s design
is the ghost the host has left behind
to greet and sweep the guest inside,
stoke the fire and sing his lines..

all is calm, all is bright

Annika Norlin – Silent Night

story of a song

There was a kid called Joseph,
He’d been dealt a bad hand:
Was born poor and a bastard,
But grew up to be a preacher,
Made a new friend called Franz.

Joe went over to Franz house,
Said: see this poem I once wrote.
I feel like it’s got something,
Can you please put some music
To my words?

Looking down at the paper
And the title read: Silent Night

The first time they performed it
It was Christmas Eve.
They sang it together,
Franz played the guitar –
I can see them before me.

And this big shot organ builder
Fell in love with the song,
Brought it back to his home town
Where some folk singers heard it
And they spread it around.

Slightly changed each time it was sung, was Silent Night.

When I’m down I just think about it –
How they must have felt when they performed it,
If the choir cried when they sang it,
If anyone in the church that day said –
Well I like the older stuff better,
They should do more upbeat tunes

It could have been a day like any other day,
When Joseph would be preachin’ and Franz would be playin’.
9 out of 10 days are slightly disappointing,
But on the tenth, you see that light beckoning.
They had no idea that Silent Night would be Silent Night

Sing it with me.
Let your voice carry from all those miles away.
If you sing loud enough, my microphone might record you,
It might record you.

Silent night, holy night
Silent night, holy night
Silent night, holy night
Silent night, holy night

In World War One, 1914
Because it was Christmas
There was a short truce on the battlefield.

Both sides laid down their weapons,
Sang carols in the night
And the day after
Like nothing had happened, they continued the fight.

There was only one song
Known to soldiers on both sides
And for a second
All was calm, and all was bright

Christmas truce

oh jens

Jens Lekman - Life will see you now

…”if you’re gonna write a song about this, then please don’t make it a sad song”
which was something a friend once said to me.
I didn’t think much about it when I wrote it but there is a feeling
on this album as if I was aware that every time I write a song,
I have the power to decide if it’s going to be a happy memory or a sad memory.
If there is a way out or not.

it’s about these people and it’s like they’re sitting in a waiting room, waiting for life to start.
and then the nurse comes out and says “life will see you now”.

Here’s what I ended up writing about:
I wrote about being close to someone who’s seriously ill but not knowing exactly how close you are.
About fear of conflict and the first big fight in a relationship.
About a wedding I once played where I had to do some last minute counseling.
About choosing who you want to be with.
About a perfume that’s been haunting me for years and the memories attached to this perfume.
About the sadness of not being able to express love or being vulnerable with another man.
About a mormon missionary I once met.
About figuring out why we’re here on earth.
About the bridges we cross and how they burn behind us.

Latest Jens Lekman album is gorgeous.
His songwriting is up there with Jarvis Cocker and Alex Kapranos lyrics for me.
See for yourself:

story of how we met, the long version

Nothing became something.
Turned itself inside out.

Subatomic particles became atoms, became stars, became galaxies.

The earth’s crust became solidified.
The planets became perfectly aligned,
Jupiter blinked with its little red eye.

Oxygen replaced methane.
A party started in the ocean:
Trilobites and crustaceans,
A Cambrian explosion.

A conga line headed up on land
Out of the water and into the frying pan
A layer of iridium paved the way
For furry mammals with big, beautiful brains.

The Congo River divided the chimpanzees,
The peaceful bonobos from the ones like you and me.
As soon we stood up, picked an apple from a tree
Someone pointed a finger, said, “That apple belongs to me.”

And people fought and loved and died
And everywhere babies opened their eyes
And had their hearts broken, laughed, and cried,
Watched the planets slowly collide.

And one day I asked if I could borrow your bass guitar,
Not that I needed one…
But I didn’t know where to start.

One magic night in an empty backyard
You grabbed my arm and kissed me quick
Under a heaven full of stars.

And that’s the story of how we met.
The long version.

And you can call it fate or chance
But we made it happen,
We made it happen, we made it happen.

And one old song with a perfect video: