Saturday, November 19, 2011

Ain't it hard just to live

Written by Randy Newman in the late 1970s, Baltimore is a definite contender for saddest song ever written. I've never heard Newman's original version, but Nina Simone covered the song for the eponymous 1978 album and her version is sometimes almost unbearable: the word "Baltimore" is a moan and a lament, the other lines infused with world-weary sadness. It's a beautiful song, and the imagery is simple and stark:

Beat-up little seagull
On a marble stair  
Trying to find the ocean  
Looking everywhere

1 comment:

Claire said...

"Beat-up little seagull" - that line alone is enough to begin to thaw my hardened heart.