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Saddest (or most poignant) song you know?


Morgan
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Gloomy Sunday.  There’s been loads of versions - some have added a “Bobby in the shower” last verse to make it a bit less bleak.

Here’s Sinead O’Connor’s version…

 

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Statts1976uk

For me it's James and Coming Home Pt 2.

 

It's about how much he misses his son as he has to go record and tour away from home for weeks. When it was released I was a bit down as I had been working away from home for a fair while and it just reassured me I wasn't the only one.

 

The upside was that the day it was released I got a job offer much closer to home and could see the end in sight. I was a bit sad and tweeted the lead singer Tim Booth not expecting a reply but I got a really lovely message back.

 

 

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All roads lead to Gorgie

I'm not sure this song is all that sad but it certainly has a melancholic feel in my opinion.

 

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frankblack

The album Electro-Shock Blues by Eels is undoubtedly the saddest.  It deals with the suicide of the singer's sister and his mother's terminal lung cancer.

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electro-Shock_Blues

 

The album starts with a number of bleak songs, but does finish with songs that showed the turnaround and hope for the future.  It is a fantastic album.

 

Summary:

Background and content

Electro-Shock Blues was written largely in response to frontman Mark Oliver "E" Everett's sister Elizabeth's suicide and his mother's terminal lung cancer. The title refers to the electroconvulsive therapy received by Elizabeth Everett when she was institutionalized. Many of the songs deal with their decline, his response to loss and coming to terms with suddenly becoming the only living member of his family (his father, Dr. Hugh Everett III, having died of a heart attack in 1982; Everett, then 19 years old, was the first to discover his body).[1]

Though much of the album is, on its surface, bleak, its underlying message is that of coping with tragedy. The record begins with "Elizabeth on the Bathroom Floor", a sparse piece composed of one of Elizabeth Everett's final diary entries. Later, the album's emotional climax is reached in two tracks: "Climbing to the Moon", which draws upon Everett's experiences visiting his sister at a mental health facility shortly before her death; and "Dead of Winter", a song about his mother's painful radiation treatment and slow death. The album's last song, "P.S. You Rock My World", is a hopeful bookend to "Elizabeth", containing subtly humorous lyrics that describe, among other things, an elderly woman at a gas station honking her car at Everett, incorrectly assuming he is the attendant, and his decision that "maybe it's time to live".[2]

According to the Eels official website, the song "Baby Genius" is about Everett's father, a quantum physicist who authored the Many Worlds Theory, although Jim Lang, who helped with the song, believed it was about Eels former bassist, Tommy Walter.[3]

 

 

 

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jonesy
9 hours ago, frankblack said:

The album Electro-Shock Blues by Eels is undoubtedly the saddest.  It deals with the suicide of the singer's sister and his mother's terminal lung cancer.

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electro-Shock_Blues

 

The album starts with a number of bleak songs, but does finish with songs that showed the turnaround and hope for the future.  It is a fantastic album.

 

Summary:

Background and content

Electro-Shock Blues was written largely in response to frontman Mark Oliver "E" Everett's sister Elizabeth's suicide and his mother's terminal lung cancer. The title refers to the electroconvulsive therapy received by Elizabeth Everett when she was institutionalized. Many of the songs deal with their decline, his response to loss and coming to terms with suddenly becoming the only living member of his family (his father, Dr. Hugh Everett III, having died of a heart attack in 1982; Everett, then 19 years old, was the first to discover his body).[1]

Though much of the album is, on its surface, bleak, its underlying message is that of coping with tragedy. The record begins with "Elizabeth on the Bathroom Floor", a sparse piece composed of one of Elizabeth Everett's final diary entries. Later, the album's emotional climax is reached in two tracks: "Climbing to the Moon", which draws upon Everett's experiences visiting his sister at a mental health facility shortly before her death; and "Dead of Winter", a song about his mother's painful radiation treatment and slow death. The album's last song, "P.S. You Rock My World", is a hopeful bookend to "Elizabeth", containing subtly humorous lyrics that describe, among other things, an elderly woman at a gas station honking her car at Everett, incorrectly assuming he is the attendant, and his decision that "maybe it's time to live".[2]

According to the Eels official website, the song "Baby Genius" is about Everett's father, a quantum physicist who authored the Many Worlds Theory, although Jim Lang, who helped with the song, believed it was about Eels former bassist, Tommy Walter.[3]

 

 

 

He's a hard listen sometimes, ol' Mark, but produces some absolutely beautiful tunes as well.  Saw him live at Leeds festival many years ago. His instruments take a lot of punishment during the show.

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frankblack
26 minutes ago, jonesy said:

He's a hard listen sometimes, ol' Mark, but produces some absolutely beautiful tunes as well.  Saw him live at Leeds festival many years ago. His instruments take a lot of punishment during the show.

 

Yeah.  Saw him at the Picturehouse several years ago - it was a great gig.  I loved them doing Mr E's Beautiful Blues to the music of Twist and Shout by the Beatles.

 

His more recent albums are hit and miss - some good others not.

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Diadora Van Basten

I’ll sail this ship alone by The Beautiful South. It contains the lyric:
 

“Well they said if I burnt myself alive that you’d come running back.”

 

Sad, beautiful and great song definitely my favourite.

 

https://youtu.be/4NskZaSJk1Q

 

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I P Knightley
2 hours ago, Diadora Van Basten said:

I’ll sail this ship alone by The Beautiful South. It contains the lyric:
 

“Well they said if I burnt myself alive that you’d come running back.”

 

Sad, beautiful and great song definitely my favourite.

 

https://youtu.be/4NskZaSJk1Q

 

Paul Heaton writes some great lyrics. Prettiest Eyes is another; more poignant than sad.

 

Another of my poignantest is Sleep Instead of Teardrops which is Del Amitri musing on the futility of saying platitudes to close friends who have lost a near or dear one.

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JudyJudyJudy
On 14/05/2022 at 20:34, Malinga the Swinga said:

First song I learnt word for word. Still can do it now on the odd occasion.

👍

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Craig_

Has to be this classic. Written about his brother who succumbed to and died from heroin abuse:

 

 

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The Frenchman Returns

 

A few days after my mum passed away I was driving on the bypass and this came on. I had to go on the hard shoulder and howl. I switch it off now.

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JudyJudyJudy
Posted (edited)

 Beautiful song about always feeling that even though you might have lost someone they are always beside you " through the years".. Judy singing at her most poignant best at the end of her show .  Had the pleasure of watching her daughter  Lorna Luft  sing it with her ( Judy was on the screen in the background obviously...Im not that old :) amazing and not a dry eye in the house really. 

 

 

Edited by JamesM48
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jambo89

Father and Son by Cat Stevens is more poignant than sad.

 

He aint heavy he's my brother for personal reasons

 

Similarly, I love my life by Robbie Williams. It was released around the time my son was born.

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New Town Loafer
On 14/05/2022 at 00:15, Weakened Offender said:

Into Dust by Mazzy Star is the correct answer here. 

Beautiful voice and song.

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New Town Loafer

Heaven by Eric Clapton is incredibly sad.

 

And anything by Frightened Rabbit. Floating in the Forth (particularly in hindsight), Good Arms vs Bad Arms and my personal favourite:

 

 

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3 hours ago, I P Knightley said:

Paul Heaton writes some great lyrics. Prettiest Eyes is another; more poignant than sad.

 

Another of my poignantest is Sleep Instead of Teardrops which is Del Amitri musing on the futility of saying platitudes to close friends who have lost a near or dear one.

He’s a genius at just throwing in incredibly well crafted single lines. On of my favourite is in Don’t Marry Him. “And your love light shines like cardboard”. 

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Went to see the Van Gogh exhibition the other week. This is beautiful

 

 

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The Natural Order

For me it would be between Jeremy by Pearl Jam or 45 by Shinedown. Both great songs based on very sad stories.

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Parttimer1874
On 14/05/2022 at 09:54, sinks said:

Tears in heaven-Clapton


Agree with this. Have to switch it off when it comes on. Not not got a great deal of time for Clapton but god what a thing to go through. 

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pharmaceutical01

Caledonia - Frankie miller

 

Wonderful Life - Black

 

The Stolen Child - The Waterboys

 

i love sad morose songs - dunno why?? Just me I guess!

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16 minutes ago, Parttimer1874 said:


Agree with this. Have to switch it off when it comes on. Not not got a great deal of time for Clapton but god what a thing to go through. 

The worst

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Ulysses
44 minutes ago, pharmaceutical01 said:

The Stolen Child - The Waterboys

 

 

I love Tomás Mac Eoin's vocals on that song.

 

 

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JudyJudyJudy
2 hours ago, Ulysses said:

 

Beautiful Song 🎵 

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pharmaceutical01
24 minutes ago, Ulysses said:

 

I love Tomás Mac Eoin's vocals on that song.

 

 

Just matches the song perfectly

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JudyJudyJudy
1 hour ago, Parttimer1874 said:


Agree with this. Have to switch it off when it comes on. Not not got a great deal of time for Clapton but god what a thing to go through. 

I couldn’t even bare reading about what happened to his child . It really was just horrific . The song is so painful 😣 very emotional and raw . 

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JudyJudyJudy

Another raw and heart breaking song really 

 

 

 

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brownkg

Bit of bias but my friend Dean's song  Cotton Snow  covers the futility of war

 

and then there is the Buffalo Blood project with Nelson Hubbard, Audrey Spillman and Joshua Birt with parallels to what is happening nowadays 
 

 

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brownkg

And for those who mentioned the living years here is a stripped back version by BA Robertson 

 

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Led Tasso
On 14/05/2022 at 02:32, I P Knightley said:

I've got a few so please indulge me.

 

First up is Ruby's Arms by Tom Waits. I don't know why he feels he has to leave that relationship. He clearly knows he'll break her heart and Curses the fact that he'll never kiss her lips again. All kicked off by the most mournful brass ensemble.

He's dying, isn't he? 

 

 

My other Tom Waits one is Kentucky Avenue; a wistful recollection of a childhood larks with a best pal who you know will be pals for life. It's only after 3 and a half minutes recounting tales of winding him up that a fire truck is rushing to his house; of breaking windows in an abandoned house or rubbing berries in each other's faces that Tom reveals his one frustration: that his best pal for life is wheelchair bound and that yound Tom dreams more than anything of getting his chum of his affliction.

I've listened to it a hundred times and every time...

 

Then there's Pearl Jam with EdVed singing to a loved one on his or her death bed. It's me beside my dad, wondering whether he knew how much I loved him and how little I was ready to let him go. 

Hug your kids, people.

 

Last one (for now) is from one of EdVed's close pals, Simon Townshend. Its maybe appropriate for mental health awareness week to hear intimate stories of folk struggling with addiction or depression. A bit like Hurt but a bit closer to home. 

 

 

I came here to post this Tom Waits one. Something about how plainly it's sung is the biggest kicker for me. It's probably not his saddest work—his album Blood Money is the darkest album I've ever heard, and absolutely the thing that will scrape you off the floor from the worst depression because he's actually naming the bleakness so well, but anyway. This is ultimately about the plain banality of devastating grief.

 

The line at the end, "my legs ache, my heart is sore, the well is full of pennies" is just flawless.

 

 

At the other end, here's John Darnielle's unforgettable unleashing of the raw bitterness and rage of an ugly end to a marriage.

 

 

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The Dragon Reborn
On 14/05/2022 at 01:18, Jambo_jim2001 said:

Eva Cassidy time to say farewell,my mum picked that for her funeral when she was dying,,Mike and the mechanics living years after my auld man died, sometimes when I look at my son and when he laughs.

 

♥️
 

On 14/05/2022 at 07:32, I P Knightley said:

 

Then there's Pearl Jam with EdVed singing to a loved one on his or her death bed. It's me beside my dad, wondering whether he knew how much I loved him and how little I was ready to let him go. 

Hug your kids, people.

 


 

 

♥️

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The Dragon Reborn

Was a huge Lord of the Rings fan in my younger years and around the time Return of the King was released, my pop passed away. Found the ending of the movie quite emotional and this song from Annie Lennox came on during the end credits and the lyrics had me in pieces thinking about him. We ended up playing it at my pop’s funeral. Still can’t hear the opening bells without welling up.

 

 

 

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Jambo_jim2001
15 hours ago, The Dragon Reborn said:

 

♥️
 

 

♥️

Thanks 👍👍

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JudyJudyJudy
8 hours ago, Jambo 4 Ever said:

Over the rainbow 

Yes Judy was the greatest entertainer really and this was her song . She would have been a 100 on June 10th this year if she had made it through the drink and the drugs 🥲 unfortunately back in the 1960s there wasn’t much help for addicts . 

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westbow
On 16/05/2022 at 20:59, Ulysses said:

 

My eldest daughter was obsessed with Jessie when she was wee. Left home now. I cannae  listen to it 😢.

 

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Ulysses
13 hours ago, westbow said:

My eldest daughter was obsessed with Jessie when she was wee. Left home now. I cannae  listen to it 😢.

 

 

Sorry about that. 😢

 

I saw Terminator 2: Judgment Day when it first came out, and to this day it's one of my favourite films.  For years a big ambition of mine was to watch it with my son on a big screen with a proper sound system, rather than on the telly at home as we had done a couple of times.  I finally got to do that when it was shown in one of the cinemas here in Dublin in a special anniversary showing - by which time he was nearly 21.  He's left home now, and the theme music from that movie always reminds me of him and of that moment.

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Ulysses

One of the best men I ever met introduced me to this song over 30 years ago; the singer was a friend of his.  Sadly, he died suddenly a few years ago in his 50s, and the lives of his circle of friends has been poorer since.

 

 

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