A big family, a reading addiction, and the occasional celebrity scandal are the ingredients of life that create one woman's opinion on just about everything.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

John Denver

Last night on our local PBS station they were having one of their fund raisers and showing a concert to generate interest. Well actually it wasn't a concert it was sort of a musical documentary about John Denver. It was pretty interesting and there was alot of narrative in the program by John himself discussing how he came to write certain songs and what they meant.

After incredible popularity for many years many comedians and our fickle pop culture began to make fun of his cheerfulness and young cherubic features. As we know now he actually had some very deep valleys and battled depression over the years. While their are several opinions as to whether or not he committed suicide almost 10 years ago I was struck anew while watching this program how beautiful some of his songs and lyrics are. They are thoughtful and evocative. John Denver music was one of the things TGILW and I had in common when we met. It was the only music that we had dual sets of when we married.

His song Calypso about the boat Jacques Cousteau used to study the ocean was written to bring awareness about the beauty of our oceans and our responsibility to protect our planet. He was speaking about conservation and ecology way back in the 70s. He donated all the proceeds from Calypso to the Cousteau Society. Pretty cool.

At any rate it brought back many wonderful memories. I went with a bunch of girlfriends in 1975 to a concert at the brand spanking new Universal Amphitheater to see him. The sellout crowd was on their feet most of the night and it was the first time I was to experience thousands of people singing with an artist at the top of their lungs. Just a great time and a great memory.

In 1977 after my family had travelled through Colorado many times driving between New Mexico (where my Dad was stationed at the time) and Montana where my grandparents lived, I decided to move to Colorado Springs. I lived there for two and a half of the best years of my life. To this day my brothers say I moved there because I loved John Denver music. The reasons for moving there are many, but I can tell you the only reason I left was because I met this guy, fell in love and he had a great job in...OHIO!

Here's some John Denver for you. I chose a medely he did of some of his more popular songs back in 1992.

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Anonymous Gabrielle said...

Oh, I LOVE John Denver. Seriously. I play him often. The first thing I ever played on guitar was Country Roads, but Rocky Mountain High is one of my all-time faves-- it's such a personal song yet I think we can all relate to that sense of freedom and belonging. Makes me cry. So do Lady and Sunshine On My Shoulders.

5:14 AM PDT  
Blogger Rosie said...

Gabrielle, I hadn't listened to any JD music for quite a while so the program was a wonderful trip down memory lane.

Country Roads keeps running through my head today... I very much agree that his songs certainly evoke both a strong visual as well as emotional response.

7:39 AM PDT  
Blogger ReneeW said...

I love JD too. We met him in Seattle at a little glass blowing shop downtown. He was standing in the back watching the glass blowing like the rest of us. When we turned around to leave, there he was. We tried not to act like idiots but I had to get his picture and shake his hand. He was scheduled for a concert the next day so we got tickets. It was very special.

9:36 AM PDT  
Blogger Rosie said...

Renee! OMG that is sooooo cool! The program we watched last night just reminded us what a talented song writer and humanitarian he was. Man, I'm so jealous.

12:12 PM PDT  
Blogger Isabella Snow said...

He was so popular when I was a kid, always on the Muppets show.

I remember people ragging on him when he ditched the glasses and went all suavo - people are cruel.

He wasn't a bad looking guy.

6:32 PM PDT  
Blogger Rosie said...

Not only was he not bad looking, but a nice man to boot.

10:33 PM PDT  
Blogger CindyS said...

Wow, thanks for reminding me of JD - of course I'm the hick girl who loves the song 'I'm a country boy' but I also knew every song on this medely.

He had such a strong beautifully toned voice and now that I'm 36 he was one hot dude ;) (when you're a kid you don't think adults are all the cute)


12:01 AM PDT  

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