01 August, 2013

{this memory} 87

This is the story behind last Monday's {this moment}.

Well, those are two old guys. I'm on the right, and Rod MacDonald is on the left. This was taken after he performed a concert in my home in 2010.

Rod MacDonald is a wonderfully talented American folksinger and songwriter - and a fraternity brother from our University of Virginia days in the late 1960s. I was unaware for much of his career that he was performing, but in the last decade I've become quite a fan. Described by one critic as "… one of the most politically and socially aware lyricists of our time, Rod MacDonald has been entertaining audiences worldwide for over 35 years with his timeless ballads, modern folk songs, satirical commentaries, wry humor, and diverse music genres.” In 2012, he released his latest and ninth album entitled Songs of Freedom.

He has performed two other concerts in my home, the most recent last Friday, and I have gone to see his concerts twice in Syracuse. I remain amazed each time I see him that his voice retains its pure and crystalline quality, his guitar work unexcelled, and his songwriting so very entertaining. I apologize for the audio quality on the clip below. Check out his music - on Amazon, CDBaby, or his web site.

I am a fortunate man. Life is good.


Rod MacDonald

New York City rain
I don't know if it's making me dirtier or clean
went for the subway but there was no train
and the tunnel was crumbling for repairs again
and the sign said welcome to American Jerusalem

I been around
you could spend forever looking for a friend in this town
and all you get to do is lay your dollar down
till you're stumbling drunk up the stairs again
and the sign says welcome to American Jerusalem

In the temples of American Jerusalem
they buy an ounce of South African gold
they don't care who was bought or sold
or who died to mine it
in the temples of American Jerusalem
they buy an ounce of Marseilles white
somewhere on a street with no light
somebody dies trying it

and somewhere in a crowd
looking the kind of way that makes you turn around
will be somebody who knows what it's about
and she's going to take the ribbons from her hair again
and welcome you to American Jerusalem

In the alleys of American Jerusalem
the homeless lie down at the dawn
the pretty people wonder what they're on
and how they afford it
in the ashes of American Jerusalem
the prophets live their deaths out on the corner
the pretty people say there should've been a warning
but nobody heard it

then shadows lick the sun
the streets are paved with footsteps on the run
somebody must've got double 'cause I got none
I forgot to collect my share again
so go west to breath the cleansing air again
go Niagara for your honeymoon again
go on the road if you're going to sing your tune again
go to sea to learn to be a man again
till you come on home to
American Jerusalem