Saturday, October 24, 2009

Loving Bruce Cockburn

The Last Night of the World-Bruce Cockburn
The Last Night of the World by Bruce Cockburn. Click on the image for the video.
It all started with "Coldest Night of the Year." I don't know if it was an attempt to learn to love Minnesota winters, the fact that he mentions the south of France, or that line about "the suddenly compact universe of skin and breath and hair," but I was hooked from the first chord. It remains in my top five favorite songs of all time. No, it's not the song I've posted. I wanted you to hear "The Last Night of the World." It's the song that makes me remember the pure joy of seeing him live.
He looks like he came from another world, sent here to teach us all how to be better humans; to recognize that we're all in this together. The mirror that he holds up to us is the mirror that reminds us that we can do better, that we ARE better. And he does it with music. If you see him in concert, the feelings that are exchanged between him and his audience are palpable. We love him. He loves us. It's a real exchange. Maybe even life-changing.
He's a rabble-rouser of the best kind. He's not afraid to tell it like it is and he's not afraid to get mad in order to do it. "If I Had A Rocket Launcher" ring a bell? It's just one of the bells he's ringing to wake us all up. He makes us think. He makes us WANT to do better. I dare you to watch the video for "If A Tree Falls," and not be moved to care a bit more about the Mother Ship, Planet Earth; to want to see change in our world. Real change. The kind that makes us discover new ways of being. The kind that I believe is happening as I write this. I hope I'm right.
Now, for my own personal caveat. Next time we are in a concert venue together and Bruce starts to wrap it up with "The Last Night of the World," I'm warning you, I will NOT sit in my seat. I will not worry if the folks behind me are getting irritated because I'm up and dancing. Get your sorry butts out of your seats and join me. Celebrate this man and his music and why we love him. He deserves it, WE deserve it. Have some fun and realize we ARE in this together. When you read this, open the video, turn up the volume, then get out of your chair and DANCE, for yourself, for the world, for the change that's happening. And let's dance for each other, because as the Hopi elders have said, "WE are the ones we've been waiting for."

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for your thoughts. Bruce's music is a touchstone, and a wellspring, a source of endless inspiration and a continual call to action. Bruce has proven what Gahndi said, "A single candle can shatter the darkeness."