Sunday, November 16, 2014

SONGS THAT TELL A STORY #10: "The Four Seasons Of Life" by NARVEL FELTS, 1963

Albie's Note:  According to everything I can find about it out on-line, this ballad was first recorded by Rockabilly legend Narvel "the Marvel" in 1963, but this is the version I have always loved, recorded live for the above album much later, sometime in the '70s, I believe.  I had this old LIVE album on Cassette and this song brings back all kinds of memories of my younger days in the 1980s and my '73 Chevy pick-up.  I especially like this version because of the introduction, where Narvel [born November 11, 1938 and still touring!] tells of "the strange mood" that came over him when he came to write this unusual song about family, life and death, and this intro serves to give the whole thing a certain strange-- almost eerie-- poignancy. 

Hear for yourself:


Deep in the night a baby cries
Little does he understand that before he knows it he'll be a man
In the spring a young man's fancy turns to love
In treetops high he sees the mating of the dove
Then he finds her somehow, somewhere, and with one kiss a love they share
This is the first season of life

In the summer he gives her a wedding band
As hot wind blows they walk together through the sand
Then they have a family, first comes one then two then three
This is the second season of life

Then comes autumn the green leaves turn to gold
Their two daughters have husbands their son takes a wife
Their grandchildren have reached number nine
This is the third season of life

In the winter an old man's hair has turned to snow
His dreams are gone with the cold north wind that blows
For she is gone and he's alone soon he must go where she has gone
This is the last season of life

"Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away."
JAMES 4:14

Saturday, November 15, 2014


Albie's Note: The Quiet Joys of Brotherhood is a beautiful poem by the late, GREAT novelist/folk singer/iconoclast and genius Richard Fariña  (March 8, 1937 – April 30, 1966)  which he set musically to the public domain melody of the ancient Irish air My Lagan Love. His widow Mimi Fariña (born Margarita Mimi Baez, April 30, 1945 – July 18, 2001) sang it in 1968 on the final Richard and Mimi Fariña album Memories [a long time fave of Albie's] , two full years after Richard's untimely death in a motorcycle crash.

I loved that old album like few others, and always loved this particular poem.   I have long considered Farina the TRUE 'last of the Beats' because in many ways he was the last gasp of that strange sensibility... at once joyous and poetic yet darkly acknowledging of the "American Weirdness."

Here is Mimi's great rendition of one of Richard's true poetic classics. I am no leftie, but Brotherhood is a really good thing to sing about.


Where gentle tides go rolling by
Along the salt-sea strand
The colors blend and roll as one
Together in the sand
And often do the winds entwine
To send their distant call
The quiet joys of brotherhood
When love is lord of all

Where oat and wheat together rise
Along the common ground
The mare and stallion light and dark
Have thunder in their sound
The rainbow sign, the blended flood
Still have my heart enthralled
The quiet joys of brotherhood
When love is lord of all

But men have come to plow the tides
The oat lies on the ground
I hear their fires in the field
They drive the stallion down
The roses bleed, both light and dark
The winds do seldom call
The running sands recall the time
When love was lord of all



Sunday, November 9, 2014

BIG AL's JOVIAL JUKEBOX #33: "It Ain't Me, Babe, " Sayaka Alessandra sings Bob Dylan, 2010

Albie's Note: I always like to listen to this young gal form Sicily, the amazing Japanese/Italian amateur [recently turned professional]  SAYAKA ALESSANDRA.   Her taste in songs is marvelous, strongly leaning toward the Country/Rockabilly side of the spectrum, but at the same time, full of wonderful surprises too.  

Here, in a video posted back in 2010 she does Bob Dylan's great paean to "bad relationships" in a way that I think might actually top both the TURTLES' and JOHNNY CASH's hit versions from the 60s.

"It Ain't Me, Babe."   Indeed.

Written by Bob Dylan

Go ’way from my window
Leave at your own chosen speed
I’m not the one you want, babe
I’m not the one you need
You say you’re lookin’ for someone
Never weak but always strong
To protect you an’ defend you
Whether you are right or wrong
Someone to open each and every door
But it ain’t me, babe
No, no, no, it ain’t me, babe
It ain’t me you’re lookin’ for, babe

Go lightly from the ledge, babe
Go lightly on the ground
I’m not the one you want, babe
I will only let you down
You say you’re lookin’ for someone
Who will promise never to part
Someone to close his eyes for you
Someone to close his heart
Someone who will die for you an’ more
But it ain’t me, babe
No, no, no, it ain’t me, babe
It ain’t me you’re lookin’ for, babe

Go melt back into the night, babe
Everything inside is made of stone
There’s nothing in here moving
An’ anyway I’m not alone
You say you’re lookin' for someone
Who’ll pick you up each time you fall
To gather flowers constantly
An’ to come each time you call
A lover for your life an’ nothing more
But it ain’t me, babe
No, no, no, it ain’t me, babe
It ain’t me you’re lookin’ for, babe

See more at Sayaka's Youtube channel: