Posted by: suek2001 | January 30, 2015

Someday the world I used to know…

It seems like I’ve been writing about music a lot lately..maybe the cold winter months have made me focus on the hope that music gives me….I’m not sure…

I just wish I wasn’t writing another blog about the passing of a songwriter who made a huge impact on the world of music…

Rod McKuen….a poet..a songwriter…passed away this week…at the age of 81…


I found out when Rod’s name was trending on Facebook…and although trending on Facebook isn’t as hip as trending on Twitter, I still smiled….For Rod to break through the clutter of social media well after the apex of his career, must mean something…

Rod’s words were poetry…and had images of the past..of children..of lovers..and of dying….He wrote over 1500 songs..wrote lots of poems too…and his name was a cultural touchstone to the past…..and also to anyone who loves The Kingston Trio…

When I read of Rod’s passing, the first song that came to my mind was “Ally Ally Oxen Free”


…one of my favorite songs and a great call for change…for freedom…for a call for peace…and one of the first songs that touched on the importance of a clean enviroment…It appears on a great Kingston Trio album called “Time To Think”…one of the best albums they ever did and a great collection of thoughtful, somber tunes in the chaotic days after the Kennedy Assasination..

It also features another Rod Mckuen song..this time a collaboration with Jaques Brel…a moody, early version of a song that would be all over the airwaves in the 70’s…The Kingston Trio did “Seasons in the Sun” first:

(As an aside, this song will always mean something..a friend came to a Kingston Trio concert because she heard this song and was so taken with it, she wanted to meet Bob Shane…She did and it was a dream come true..and so, a young fan was born)

The Kingston Trio would go on to record more Rod McKuen songs…including this wistful vocal with Bob Shane(again) on lead:

Rod McKuen songs and Bob Shane vocals seemed to match pretty well. It’s a testament to Mr. Shane that his voice can convey sadness, thoughtfulness and playfulness as in this other Rod McKuen number from The Kingston Trio album “Back In Town”

It seems like such a shame to say goodbye to Rod soon after saying farewell to Ervin Drake…and it’s not even February….

Still, the gift these men left us cannot be replaced…and as long as there are people that appreciate great songs of life, love and wonderment, Rod and Ervin will be with us…

For now, we bid you go….

..and I shall leave the last words to you, Rod…with “Jean”






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