For Helen’s theme this week of ‘Listen’, you could do a whole lot worse than ‘See Me, Feel Me’, the seismic climax of The Who’s ‘Tommy’. Unfortunately, I used it in August last year when the theme was ‘heat’.
So, back to the drawing board and the default option: the Grateful Dead, of course. This song may seem a little self-regarding, but it’s probably a pretty good summation of the travelling carnival of tour-following deadheads back in the day: ‘People joining hand in hand/While the music played the band’.
There’s mosquitoes on the river Fish are rising up like birds
It’s been hot for seven weeks now,
Too hot to even speak now, Did you hear what I just heard?
Say it might have been a fiddle or it could have been the wind
But there seems to be a beat now I can feel it my feet now
Listen here it comes again!
There’s a band out on the highway, They’re high steppin’ into town
It’s a rainbow full of sound, It’s fireworks, calliopes and clowns
Everybody dancin’ C’mon children, C’mon children, Come on clap your hands.
Sun went down in honey and the moon came up in wine,
You know stars were spinnin’ dizzy, Lord
The band kept us too busy we forgot about the time.
They’re a band beyond description, Like Jehovah’s favorite choir
People joining hand in hand While the music played the band, Lord
They’re setting us on fire.
Crazy rooster crowin’ midnight, Balls of lightin’ roll along
Old men sing about their dreams, Women laugh and children scream
And the band keeps playin’ on.
Keep on dancin’ thru the daylight, Greet the mornin’ air with song
No ones’s noticed, but the band’s all pack and gone. Was it ever there at all?
But they keep on dancin’ C’mon children, C’mon children, Come on clap your hands
Well the cool breeze came on Tuesday, And the corn’s a bumper crop
And the fields are full of dancin’ Full of singin’ and romancin’
The music never stopped.
Written by John Barlow and Bob Weir