Melodies that Sing Themselves
“The Birds Will Still be Singing” by Jinder
I first heard this song at one of Jinder’s gigs on a Sunday afternoon in a local pub. It was a great gig, and the first time I’d come across his music. I loved many of his songs and have been digging into his extensive back catalogue since.
“The Birds Will Still Be Singing” is one that stuck in my head as a beautiful song. It’s a nostalgic song about changes in places and how life and time moves on. The wealth of industry may have gone, but some of the simple beauties remain, and continue their “song.”
The verse tells the story and draws the pictures much like a lot of country music does. One walks the path with the narrator. My interest lies in the melody of the chorus and what I would describe as a “weeping phrase.”
“But the birds will still be singing,
and the songs will still be sung
and the song will still
be shining in the slums…”
Musicians compose in phrases, much like when we speak — and exactly as we hear in poetry. There’s no strict formula, unless you want to churn out the kind of mindless sludge we hear in the charts all the time.
This chorus bounces in at somewhere close to an octave above the previous verse. It has a swaying, choral feel to it. I’m not sure of the exact time signature, but there is a fast waltz feel — rolling triplets. Picture proud Liverpudlians swaying side to side, pints held aloft and spilling.
The lyrics above show the phrase>answering phrase>phrase>answering phrase. It’s on the third line, I hear a quality in the melody. The way it sings sounds like a sighing/crying the phrase, descending into a little flicker of sadness. It’s such a simple moment, a hint of solemnity that rings out.
It’s this moment that captures the emotion of this song.
Of course, the lyrics are fantastic, and the whole chorus cries out for a loud sing-a-long. A powerful crescendo towards the end rounds off with a nice, warm glow of nostalgia.
Listen for yourself, see what you think.