Celtic Diva's Blue Oasis: Amazing how some things are always relevant...

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Amazing how some things are always relevant...

I have been a fan of Johnny Clegg since the late 80's/early 90's and this is one of my all-time favorite songs. His band, Savuka, formed during a time when apartheid and the torture and deaths of those who fought it were at the worst. Just the existence of a band with both whites and blacks was a protest against the government but also their incredible music and lyrical images told a better story of life under apartheid than any journalist.

Like many musicians at the time, they were eventually banned from playing live or having their music played in South Africa...until the release of Nelson Mandela and the rebirth of their country.

This song was written for (at that time) his newborn son, Jesse. I stumbled across this video today - I'd never seen it before. I was stunned by how relevant a 17-year-old song about South Africa is to the present situation...not in some war-torn African country but right here in the U.S. It made me very sad.

Watch the video, read the lyrics and you'll see what I mean.

Johnny Clegg - Cruel, Crazy, Beautiful World

You have to wash with the crocodile in the river,
you have to swim with the sharks in the sea,
you have to live with the crooked politician,
trust those things that you can never see.
Ayeye ayeye jesse mfana ayeye ayeye

It's a cruel crazy beautiful world,
every time you wake up I hope it's under a blue sky.
It's a cruel crazy beautiful world
One day when you wake up I will have to say goodbye,
goodbye, It's your world so live in it!

Beyond the door, strange cruel beautiful years lie waiting for you.
It kills me to know you won't escape loneliness,
maybe you lose hope too.
Ayeye ayeye jesse mfana ayeye ayeye

When I feel your small body close to mine
I feel weak and strong at the same time.
So few years to give you wings to fly,
show you the stars to guide your ship by

It's your world so live in it, it's your world so live in it...


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