Something David and I have not discussed too much is our love of music. I personally like a bunch of different music, but one of the more interesting types of music is the story song. This is not limited to any specific genre or artist, it is what the song ends up saying.
Some songs end up just being about emotions, a break up, an empowering situation, etc. – but then there are other songs that tell you a story about a situation. These songs will often present a story in a short period of time, although some go longer than others. I think my love of story songs comes from growing up listening to Harry Chapin. Almost every song he did were story songs. It painted a picture of a person and a situation, bringing out the strong emotion in sometimes simple situations.
I have discovered some other artists that at times have definitely given us some story songs that compare to Harry Chapin, but every artists works it out differently. With some of them it is about a whole album that takes you along a journey, but there is power when you can take a single song that encompasses an entire journey.
Probably the most famous song by Harry Chapin is Cat’s in the Cradle, but there are so many other songs that he has done. One of my favorite is The Rock because it tells such an interesting short story and you can almost picture the situation that it lays out.
The album Hazards of Love by the Decemberists is a masterpiece. This is actually a song that is part of a whole story album, but this song sits at the core of the story being told over the course of the whole album. It is incredibly eerie and you start out happy with the new life being born and then in the middle of the song it takes a dark turn.
It Was Supposed to Be So Easy
I love The Streets. I first heard them when I was in Scotland and quickly fell in love with their music. This whole album is kind of a day in the life of this one person and this first song starts us out on their story. The entire album goes through someone kind of having the crappiest day ever.
Tenacious D is fantastic and one of my favorite songs is Tribute. This is just a fun story that really references Devil Went Down to Georgia (which is another great story song).
Bonus Song: Sniper
Sniper by Harry Chapin is a powerful story told in song that was believe to be inspired by the 1966 University of Texas clocktower massacre. There is just power in the performance that Chapin gives in this song.