Music, My life

Music for a first breakup: Late 1960s Bee Gees

My first girlfriend in high school was a cute Asian-Canadian girl named Janet, and when she broke up with me one Sunday night after church, I staggered home and spent the next several days listening my roommate’s ancient Bee Gees album. It was loaded with wonderfully lugubrious songs like I Started A Joke:

I started a joke which started the whole world laughing
Oh, but I didn’t see that the joke was on me…

I’ve Gotta Get A Message To You, about a man condemned to die, was on the same album. ‘Robin Gibb, who wrote the lyrics, said that the man’s crime was the murder of his wife’s lover, though the lyrics do not explicitly allude to the latter premise (although there is a verse “Well I did it to him, now it’s my turn to die”).’

The preacher talked to me and he smiled
Said, “Come and walk with me, come and walk one more mile.
Now for once in your life you’re alone.
But you ain’t got a dime, there’s no time for the phone.”
I’ve just got to get a message to you
Hold on, hold on
One more hour and my life will be through
Hold on, hold on…

The song First of May, while sappy, is actually quite beautiful. Here is the original. You can also find it sung by Sarah Brightman, Lulu, and others.

When I was small, and Christmas trees were tall,
we used to love while others used to play.
Don’t ask me why, but time has passed us by,
some one else moved in from far away.

Now we are tall, and Christmas trees are small,
and you don’t ask the time of day.
But you and I, our love will never die,
but guess we’ll cry come first of May.

The apple tree that grew for you and me,
I watched the apples falling one by one.
And I recall the moment of them all,
the day I kissed your cheek and you were mine.


8 thoughts on “Music for a first breakup: Late 1960s Bee Gees

  1. I still listen to those Bee Gees songs (and others) once in awhile.
    I imagine those songs were tough to listen to after a break up. 😦
    Some of their songs make me cry. Combo of their voices and the words.
    I heard one of their songs on a TV show recently…something about “The sun in my life…it is dead…it is dead.” I had never heard that one before.
    (((HUGS))) 🙂

    • I never heard that one. I’ll have to look it up.

      Back when I was 16, I lay around my room for several days, moping and listening to Bee Gees and Traffic and talking to my roommate, and at some point I realized that I was enjoying myself. It was fun to indulge in my misery. Deep down I knew that the relationship was never going anywhere anyway.

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