Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Al Stewart

Image from slicethelife

"On a morning from a Bogart movie, in a country where they turn back time, you go strolling down the street like Peter Lorre, contemplating a crime." So begins Year of the Cat, written and sung by Scottish music man Al Stewart. Another great hit is Time Passages.

As well as these songs, with their complex and poetic lyrics, this versatile musician produced songs with historic content, such as this song about Nostradamus and his prophecies.

An old song, On the Border, sung here in 2002, Stewart says, is about "the Basque separatist movement, the Rhodesian crisis, and the decline and fall of the British Empire." And the fact that it's his only song to make the American top 40 proves that "disk jockeys don't listen to lyrics."

This versatile lyricist has also produced a song about the classical legend of Helen and Cassandra, and another, Manuscript, about the lead-up to the First World War.

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