Saturday, January 5, 2008

Who'll Stop the Rain?

The almost-weekly music quiz I was doing here is no more. I may bring it back sometime in the distant future, but it's on the shelf for now. I've decided instead to write about the soundtrack of my life, to highlight a song every now and then. I've already started.

My interest in music started when I wasn't much more than a toddler, even earlier than my interest in sports. I remember a little portable 45 record player and a stack of my mother's old records. There were about 200 of them -- original 45's of Elvis, Buddy Holly, and dozens of other old rock n' rollers from the 50's. I wore the grooves out on a lot of them.

Somewhere along the way, for a birthday or Christmas one year, I got a portable cassette player and a stack of about five or six cassettes. Even though I didn't pick them out, this was my first music collection. There was the Best of the Bee Gees (way, way before the Saturday Night Fever Bee Gees), an album by Tommy James and the Shondells, a Cream album (I wasn't ready for this yet; I was only about ten.), and Cosmo's Factory by Creedence Clearwater Revival. I was too young to understand a lot that was going on in the 1960's; it was all filtered to me through my parents' perceptions. I think Cosmo's Factory was my first unfiltered taste. Every song on the album was great. Some, like "Who'll Stop the Rain," were special.

Long as I remember
The rain been coming down.
Clouds of mystery pouring
Confusion on the ground.
Good men through the ages,
Trying to find the sun;
And I wonder,
Still I wonder,
Who'll stop the rain.

I went down Virginia,
Seeking shelter from the storm.
Caught up in the fable,
I watched the tower grow.
Five year plans and new deals,
Wrapped in golden chains.
And I wonder,
Still I wonder
Who'll stop the rain.

Heard the singers playing,
How we cheered for more.
The crowd had rushed together,
Trying to keep warm.
Still the rain kept pouring,
Falling on my ears.
And I wonder,
Still I wonder
Who'll stop the rain.

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