Funeral Songs

April 7, 2007 at 7:05 am 3 comments

Earlier today, when I was bored I started compiling a list of songs I’d like played at my funeral. I wasn’t in a particularly down mood (indeed, things were a bit trippy), but I was reading Ian’s latest post and something he said (the words “no surprises please”, strangely enough) reminded me of the song No Surprises by Radiohead. And when I’m in an up mood, if I think of a song, then I must hear it, right now. So I played the song and that set me off on thinking that, apart from it being tremendously depressing, it’d make a good funeral song for me, what with lines like “I’ll take a quiet life / a handshake of carbon monoxide”.

Anyway, most of my selections were, to be honest, awful. Good songs, but bad funeral songs. Not the kind of thing anyone would want to hear as the dearly departed slides towards the furnace. There was one exception: Anywhere I Lay My Head by Tom Waits. It’s a strange track, at the end of the album Rain Dogs (a “rain dog” is a dog that gets lost because the rain has washed away its scent). Waits’s singing seems almost out of control (more than usually so), drunk and battling against despair. You can read the lyrics here (scroll down to the end).

I’m not sure that this would count as something most people would like to hear as the dearly departed departed, but it’s almost hymn-like in its theme if not its execution.

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Sleep/Food/Hallucinations 100 Days

3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. ian  |  April 7, 2007 at 7:22 am

    thanks for the pingback EC, fancy starting a meme then?
    i’m a huge Radiohead fan, i guess LetDown would be my ‘favourite depressing tune’ but i’m not sure if it would fit a funeral, y’know…?

    got me thinking, thankyou. i’ll have to check out that Tom Waits song…

  • 2. experimental chimp  |  April 7, 2007 at 10:39 am

    ian – I don’t really do memes. They’re a bit too much like the awkward ice-breakers bad trainers have you do on the first day of a new job. Do check out Tom Waits; among the other things I’ll never forgive Rod Stewart for is his awful cover of Downtown Train.

  • 3. patientanonymous  |  April 7, 2007 at 3:15 pm

    I’ve done this before and still do it…I’d have a very bizarre list I’m sure based upon my tastes? Everyone would get a complimentary CD! Although, I often think there might not be very many people that would show up at my “funeral.” I’d rathre prefer a big party? But again…not sure who might show up?

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Hi, I'm James. I'm a 26 year old guy from England with bipolar disorder (currently well controlled). I also have a circadian rhythm sleep disorder (not so well controlled). This blog has charted my journey from mental illness, through diagnosis and, recently, into recovery. It's not always easy, but then, what is?

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As of 12th September 2008 it has been forty five weeks since I quit smoking. So in another seven weeks it'll have been a whole year.

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