Two songs sung by two Elvis’s are my go-to’s during this Pandemic. Both speak of driving through hard times with hope around the corner. They acknowledge the pain while seeking the future. And my favorite part. You can belt them out with a beer in hand after a hard day.
The first one is from that other Elvis, and truth be told my favorite Elvis – Elvis Costello. Unlike his other hits, he did not write this one (Nick Lowe did) but Elvis does the best rendition – “(What’s So Funny ‘Bout) Peace, Love And Understanding” . For you have not hear it, here is the official version https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ssd3U_zicAI.
I once listened to this song on repeat at least 20 times after a hard week. The first verse and the chorus tell the story:
“As I walk through this wicked world
Searchin’ for light in the darkness of insanity
I ask myself, “Is all hope lost?
Is there only pain and hatred and misery?”
And each time I feel like this inside
There’s one thing I wanna know
What’s so funny ’bout peace, love and understanding?
What’s so funny ’bout peace, love and understanding?” Lyrics Nick Lowe
Every time I read a friend attacking another friend on Facebook in some political fight or hear about the loss of another brave soul I ask myself the same question in the first verse. But then catch myself and realize that the peace, love, and understanding lies within me. Our soul longs for peace. We just need to cling to it and understand that everyone carries pain. It is up to you to bring inner peace, to show love to your friends and enemies, and understand the pain and hope of others. Rise to the occasion, extend a hand and be the peacemaker.
The second song is by the THE Elvis – Elvis Presley. This song was sung for the first time in Elvis’s Comeback Concert in 1968 at the end. It was written by Walter Earl Brown and came 2 months after Martin Luther King’s assassination. It also contains some MLK quotes. Only 5 at the time, I still remember it. Here are some of the words.
“There must be lights burning brighter somewhere
Got to be birds flying higher in a sky more blue
If I can dream of a better land
Where all my brothers walk hand in hand
Tell me why, oh why, oh why can’t my dream come true,
There must be peace and understanding sometime
Strong winds of promise that will blow away the doubt and fear
If I can dream of a warmer sun
Where hope keeps shining on everyone
Tell me why, oh why, oh why won’t that sun appear
We’re lost in a cloud
With too much rain
We’re trapped in a world
That’s troubled with pain
But as long as a man
Has the strength to dream
He can redeem his soul and fly”
The Elvis’s sang the truth! What’s so funny ‘bout peace, love, and understanding? Absolutely NOTHING! Is there a light shining brighter somewhere? It is in our grasp. If we choose to live, love, learn and lead!
Here is my attempt at channeling Elvis.
Not Elvis but maybe not bad. Be the brighter sun!