In the recent blog Praying I journal conflicting thoughts about God’s existence; ambivalence leading to uncertainty whether GJ Strachan actually nails his colours to the theist or deist flag.
Walking through the living room earlier, though, where my mum was watching a Songs of Praise broadcast, I’ve concluded my opinions regarding contemporary hymns are far clearer.
These holy refrains churned out with the same uniformly trite melody structures and lyrics. Give me the super charged string work on Charlie Daniels ‘The Devil Went Down To Georgia’ anytime, as opposed to the Rev Daniel Charlie’s bland guitar singalong ‘Walking In God’s Shoes’.
I know my unfriendly critique about modern hymns is a gross generalisation, based on a sparse sample of songs. Yours truly can categorically state, though, I’ve never heard a clerical ballad penned in my lifetime which didn’t sound fragmented and as it was being made up as the melody progressed.
On occasions when a hymn’s due to commence, if I witness someone appear at the front of a church with a guitar, I know the congregation is in for a religious musical equivalent of a UK Eurovision Song Contest entry. A canticle, performed by a bunch of ‘happy clappers’ which I’m pretty certain I’d afford nil point.
Talking of The Eurovision Song Contest, that annual ‘melodious’ jamboree took place yesterday evening in Rotterdam. As I share as little interest in this international clambake as listening to modern hymns, a broadcast which yours truly paid little mind.
During a phone call earlier, my brother Ian felt moved to advise me last night’s winning nation was Italy. I’ve no idea who performed the UK’s entry, although, our kid assures me it wasn’t Rev Daniel Charlie crooning ‘Walking In God’s Shoes’. My brother going on to tell me our Eurovision effort was so woeful it didn’t register one single point when the scores were later divvied out.
Despite our kid appreciating the European musical showdown significantly more than his elder sibling, it’s not an event I’ve watched since my childhood, in the 1970’s. From memory the last time I viewed this orchestral confab was in 1976; a year when the UK prevailed with Brotherhood of Man’s catchy refrain ‘Save Your Kisses For Me‘.
I could be mistaken but, from memory, that victory 45 years ago was the last time the UK won this twelve monthly musical fiesta. My nations frequent Eurovision victories up until that juncture disappearing at the same time as my footballing amours Leeds United’s (LUFC) domination of English football waned…… Although, I struggle to see how the two events can be linked in any shape or form.
Bearing in mind this musically creative island has flooded the music industry with a wealth of high quality anthems for decades , the fact its been two score and five years since we won this annual competition is a tad baffling…… Or it would be if the event wasn’t generally weighted by shameless tactical voting by likeminded nations…… Allegedly!