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Song of the Day: Elton John – “The Last Song”

Elton John and Bernie Taupin have written so many wonderful songs through the years.  The 1970s were certainly ahigh point for them, but every album they’ve written since then contains gems worth listening to.  I’ve enjoyed watching their growth as songwriters and how they’ve taken on more serious topics and become more comfortable with sharing their own personal experiences.  It saddens me that so many artists start to lose the luster of fame and acknowledgement just as they start getting really good at their craft and find their true voice.

I believe that all great artists play an important role in that they help us make sense of life and its many mysteries.  Many songwriters are content to skirt the surface of existence and prefer to go the shallow hit single route riding the wave of a catchy melody and lyrics that don’t ask you to think about much of anything (worth thinking about).  However, there are a special few from every generation who are able to write beautiful misc and overlay it with real meaning and sentiment.   They end up creating the background music for their particular period in time and  write tunes that mark significant milestones for their fans and often society as a whole.  Elton John and Bernie Taupin certainly fit this description.

I chose the composition The Last Song that was written in the mid 1990 because I’ve always felt it was one of their most beautiful and heartfelt songs.   At that time HIV was unfortunately claiming too many lives to count and there was great sadness permeating many relationships.  A large number of people felt helpless about what to do and how to cope with the tragedy of it all.  This particular song turns the tables on the natural course of mortality between a father and son and reconciles the need for love and understanding above all else in the parent-child dynamic.  There is nothing like the absence of time to put the focus on what’s most important.  It is quite powerful…


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