On 11 February 2019 I set myself the challenge of reading 1001 Songs You Must Hear Before You Die by Robert Dimery (ed.) and following the book’s advice to the letter. I’ve previously read 1001 Films… and started 1001 Albums… but felt 1001 Songs… would be a sensible place to start for what I have in mind here.
My challenge is to read about one song per day and listen to it (YouTube and Spotify, I need you tonight!) before sharing my own thoughts. Some songs I will love, others I’ll hate, and I’m sure there will be those that leave me perplexed but listen to them I shall.
I’ll also try, and most likely fail, to pinpoint the best song from the 1001 on offer but I’m nothing if not foolhardy. Instead of one song, I’m predicting I’ll have about 100 favourites by the end and may have to resort to a Top 10 so far to maintain any semblance of sanity.
So long as I post every day (including Christmas) then this challenge should come to an end on Wednesday 8 November 2021. Staying with the Barney Stinson theme I am hoping that the whole experience will prove to be… legendary!
Young Fathers – Lord (2017)
Young Fathers are a Scottish band based in Edinburgh, Scotland. In 2014, they won the Mercury Prize for their album . Formed in Edinburgh in 2008 by Alloysious Massaquoi, Kayus Bankole and Graham ‘G’ Hastings, the group started performing in nightclubs when the band members were all in their teens.
We say goodbye to 2016 and hello to 2017. We’re leaving the US behind today, dear reader, and making our way back to the UK and to Scotland. Formed in 2008, Young Fathers are a trio of singers that specialised in a wide range of genres including pop, indie, soul and even rap at one stage. We join them in 2017 when they are working on their third album – Cocoa Sugar – but in the run up to that record’s release they released a new single entitled Lord.
In Lord, Young Fathers seem to be a narrator who is lost and speaking to God. They are trapped in a moment of indecision in their lives and feeling somewhat lost about the path they now want to take and which direction is right and ultimately what it all means. It sounds like they are trying to reconcile many conflicting thoughts with both love and pain touched upon at different points as the facts of life that both clearly are. The song offers no resolutions for the narrator. They are in turmoil, lost at sea, searching for answers on the horizon but finding nothing.
I was not familiar with Young Fathers before but from what I have read Lord was an indication of their change of direction at this time. Moving away from pop and even rap of their earlier days, Lord is driven by a piano melody and has what sounds like a choir atmosphere about it. I was intrigued by the origins of one’s search within themselves, describing a moment of indecision in one’s life, tracing their own path. The group’s third album followed in 2018 and has been their highest charting record in the UK to date.
Favourite songs so far: