Danny Boy, according to Wikipedia, started life as Londonderry Air (heh - he said derriere") in 1792, going through several changes before becoming one of the top 10 songs that people only know the first line of. It was also recorded, as pretty much every song has been, by Pat Boone on his 2005 Dream of Ireland album. (Note: Wikipedia shows its liberal bias by NOT listing Boone as an artist who covered it). It's not surprising the tune gets reworked frequently since it's easy to write lyrics for.
We love your blogger's postings
Giving us music interesting and odd
You're our home page
We hit F5 repeatedly
And many here
Think Pat Boone is a sod
Sorry. I'm a little punchy today. Back to Danny Boy.
Of course, lyrics can so be also not good written and clunkily as Dale Sherry's album of religious songs, "Dale Sherry Sings...Songs of the Cross and His Coming" to us proves. Dale, a teenage reprobate, caught "a glimpse of Jesus on the cross and the reality of Him dying for me won my heart." It's kind of proto-Osmond affair in that Dale's wife, Charlene, backs him on the organ and piano. "Charlene's touch on the organ and piano", the liner notes state, "not only comes from years of practice but a personal dedication to the Lord. Together now on sound recordings, they offer to you moments of music and meditation concerning the Master." Given Dale's haircut, I'm guessing this sound recording dates to the mid-60's which narrows down the other kinds of recordings engaged in they might have. Teh Google doesn't like Dale and Charlene much, either.
Not knowing the Danny Boy backstory, it came as a shock to hear "Danny Boy" reworked as a musical ode to the book of Revelations.
That my redeemer liveth
In latter days, He'll reign upon the Earth
Which trips off the tongue delightfully. But the second verse, not so much. I enjoy dissecting songs and one thing that's true for me is that I need to make sense of a lyric before I can memorize it. Just to blunt possible anti-religion criticism, let me start with Marshall Crenshaw's Valerie.
I still get tripped up on that line. Maybe it's just me, but in the need to rhyme "Valerie" Crenshaw's syntax gets a little convoluted.
I've listened to And This I Know about twenty times and still find myself unable to get the second verse down.
The world, I find t'is written
In Chapter Three, John's gospel
Just. Wow. It makes me wonder just how many days, man-hours and crowbars it took to wrestle John 3:16 into submission. At least Joni Mitchell writes her melodies with the express purpose of cramming as much information in as possible.
I'm not sure how much you know about The Rapture and The End Times. I get confused about the timetable. If I'm understanding it correctly, the horn blows and the Good float up to Heaven (leaving their cars unmanned) while the Wicked hang out on Earth. Everything's fine for awhile and then Armageddon happens and everything gets destroyed. You get one more chance to accept Jesus as Lord or it's into Hell with you. I remember hearing wingnut radio talk show host, Dennis Prager, getting walked through the process by an evangelical as they chatted about the importance of Israel.
"So, wait," Prager said, sounding slightly alarmed, "you're saying that as a Jew I have to accept Jesus or I'm going to Hell?!"
"Well," said his guest, in a voice that sounded both practical and practiced, "yes."
Dennis went to a break shortly after that.
Knowing this, it shouldn't come as too big of a surprise to hear the lines
It's about time, O Christians, about time
It's about time for the laws should be told to Jews
And accept this salvation sublime
But it still is.
Let me just hasten to add here - for Christians (or xtians), this isn't about anti-semetism. This is about a hard and fast rule that they have - No Jesus = No Heaven. They'd say this about anybody - thier grandmother, their aunt, their wife/husband or their kids. Hell, they get themselves killed in China just to say this stuff.
It's one of my more minor pet peeves about Christianity - Jews really should be given a free pass since 1) the "laws" were told to them first and 2) without Jews there'd be no Jesus to follow.