30-Day Song Challenge Day 21
Day 21 of the 30-day song challenge and we arrive at a prompt that is a lot easier to chose than some of the previous days. Today I am picking a song with a name in the title.
The 30-Day Song Challenge, for anyone new to this, is indeed a challenge. For 30 days, I have to choose one song from the list below. I made this a lot harder by deciding it would be a good writing exercise to write a blog post about each of my choices. It sounded like a good idea at the time…
Day 21 and compared to the previous two days of this challenge, this one feels much more comfortable. Not only easier to pick the song but to write about it. Early on, I set out to be more open in my posts and to be honest about how I feel, what I think and things that have happened in my past. It’s unusual for me, and I’m still not sure if I am ‘good’ at it.
I still veer off into trying to make things fun as much as I can. Old habits certainly die hard on this blog. Or maybe this exercise had been a good thing. Perhaps my writing style, if indeed I have one, is to mix the funny with the honest. Isn’t that what good writers do? Or do I reign it all in and say, “I’ve tried to be different, but I should just stick to writing comedy”? I guess this, now, is being open and honest as I am genuinely torn. Should this blog be about me and my thoughts or musings, or should it go back to being about my days out in Thailand? I guess it can be both but would that make it harder to earn a following on here?
I spoke to someone that works at a publishing house recently, and one of the things they told me was about building a ‘following’. That got me thinking, “how do I do that?” By writing posts like this? Like my original idea or should I scrap it all and go balls deep into writing comedy?
I’m sounding confused.
I hope this doesn’t sound like I’m whining, I’ve just been thinking (too much) recently on how best to spend my writing time.
Up At Eight, Can’t Be Late
Anyway, on with today’s choice of song. I first heard this song when I was 17. I was sharing a house with two other guys who I had met in the youth theatre I was part of. We had no money and a TV that hardly worked. But we did have a stereo. Or should I say, Steve had a stereo. Steve was a bit older than me and Russell, the other flatmate and he had albums that neither of us had heard.
I heard so much new music during the eight or nine months I lived there, much of it I still listen to today and ranks as some of my favourites. I first heard Neil Young during this time, as well as Pixies, Tom Waits, Joy Division and many more. Another artist I heard for the first time and to this day remains a favourite is Cat Stevens, so when I saw today’s prompt, I instantly knew what track I was going to pick.
Watch Them Run Down To Platform One
Matthew and Son by Cat Stevens is, I think, one of the first songs I remember hearing that was about working in a shit job, of being slaves to other people. It was released as a single on 30 December 1966 and appeared on Stevens’ debut album, of the same name. The track reached number 2 in the UK charts and remains Stevens’ highest-charting single.
It doesn’t sound like a song that’s making a social statement about people working for slave wages. It’s upbeat tempo and elaborate horn arrangement lull the listener into thinking it’s a sweet, jolly song about someone going to work.
The Work’s Never Done
It’s quite odd seeing the young Cat Stevens in the photo above as he quite soon grew his hair, started sporting a beard and generally became a hippie. That’s how I have always pictured him. He went on to write many brilliant songs, songs that I will admit are better than this. But I had to get a Cat Stevens track on this list so, if you haven’t heard it, I hope you like it.
If you like my writing, please stick around, make a cup of tea – Street Art in Chalermla Park Bangkok
Or head over to Spotify to see the songs that are making up this list –