Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

While I Gently Weep (the Start of Another School Year)

“While my Guitar Gently Weeps” from the Beatles White Album is one of their best, IMHO. I love the guitar chords and the stories of how it became the version we know today.

The song was supposedly inspired by I Ching a Chinese Book of Changes, which George Harrison found at his mother’s house one visit. Some say Harrison had trouble convincing the band the song was any good. After several attempts, the band had a little help from their friend, Eric Clapton, and got it right.

Whatever happened, it is hard to argue the beauty and longing in this song. It reminds me of how change sometimes feels.

So many changes happen in September: back-to-school, football, autumn, and transforming leaves. I keep thinking how much our kids have grown this year, how much fun we had this summer (most of the time), and that they’re heading back to school. It makes me smile, and yet, I long for those seemingly simpler days when we went everywhere together. It wasn’t really simpler, just different.

Our family investigated the world and the kids asked a million questions, usually while I was driving. It was fun, crazy, exhausting and…everything all at once. And it was beautiful. So, in honor of change, and beauty, and longing, I’ve compiled my top five versions of ‘While My Guitar Gently Weeps’ by some truly great musicians: The Beatles, Eric Clapton, Santana, India Arie, Prince, and Tom Petty, just to name a few.

Let’s listen, maybe weep a little, and get through the start of this new school year together. Feel free to share your favorites too!

1. Santana, Yo Yo Ma feat. India Arie

2. Beatles “White Album” (with Eric Clapton)

3. Jake Shimabukuro playing near Strawberry Fields

4. Eric Clapton

5. Prince, Tom Petty, Dhani Harrison, Jeff Lynne & Steve Winwood

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