THE RIGHT KIND OF MUSIC...
I guess when you reach a certain age topics of conversation drift in to things you never really thought about too much when you were younger. Having crossed the threshold of octogenerianism I find that conversations with others seem often to revolve largely around things medical, which is a subject I don`t really do. More worryingly I`m finding that funerals are coming round a bit more frequently than either I or the deceased might have wished. And, sadly, I attended yet another one just the other day, this time for a good friend and neighbour who I had known ever since we moved here well over thirty years ago.
It was beautifully done - quite simple and yet conducted in a spirit of heartfelt sympathy for the bereaved, coupled with a genuine appreciation of the life and times of our departed friend. Now, I`m pretty sure that years ago it was the tradition that any music played at such an event was likely to be mournful, religious in nature and clearly not designed to lift the spirits of those present. How things have changed over the years and much the better for it.
I`ve thought back to funeral services I`ve been to over recent years and each time the proceedings have included music chosen by the family which seemed to them to be right for the occasion. For example, I chose `Time to Say Goodbye` sung by Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brightman for my own mother`s service; last year an old school friend went out to the sound of Frank Sinatra belting out `New York, New York;` and another occasion heard Matt Monro singing `Softly as I Leave You.` I guess that in their own way they were `appropriate` as a memory for the departed and seemed just the right music for the day.
My most recent experience was the one I went to just a few days ago and the music chosen for that seemed also seemed to be just right. It was `Memories`, sung by the velvet voice of Perry Como and it`s hard to imagine anything more appropriate for the occasion, the family and friends of our late neighbour. An inspired choice from days when songs were songs and singers could sing. Here it is:-
Trouble is, it all made me start to wonder what might be appropriate for my own departure. I`ll get back to you about that.