Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Encouragement

I've been hesitant to post the video below because I don't want to offend my readers' sensibilities. But ever since the Edmonton Folk Music Festival in August, this song has stuck with me, the chorus of Whoa-Oh's bouncing around in my head. And after receiving some rather unhappy news this morning, I decided it was time to revisit Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats' slightly naughty song, S.O.B., for a bit of a pick me up. There's just something about the melody (and the way Nathaniel dances) that lifts me up...

In spite (or perhaps because) of its language, S.O.B. was a real crowd pleaser at the end of the Folk Fest this year -- thousands of us stood on the hill and sang its chorus of Whoa-ohs at the top of our lungs to bring the band back on stage for a lively encore, to which the whole hillside danced. My best friend and I were too close to the speakers for me to make out many of the lyrics, so I looked this video up the next day and realized it was a pretty cheerful hurting song -- an alcoholic's lament, if you will.

"My heart is breaking, hands are shaking, bugs are crawling all over me," pretty much describes the kind of misery in which we find ourselves at certain crossroads in our lives. Change is never easy, but we have no choice but to keep on moving forward in spite of rotten circumstances. Sometimes it helps to swear a little, laugh through the tears, and dance to some rowdy music. So I offer this song in that spirit, especially to my friends who are struggling (you know who you are). Keep on keeping on, and know that you are loved! And really, I'd be happy to get you a drink anytime...

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