Catching up on forty years. 1992: These Are Days – 10,000 Maniacs

Bob Harris and Natalie Merchant photo by @WhisperingBob

Bob Harris and Natalie Merchant photo by @WhisperingBob

There are always songs that define moments.  I have the privilege of sharing three of those moments with 10,000 Maniacs and their lead singer Natalie Merchant.  I spent most of 1988 with their incredible album In My Tribe.  Amazingly enough, it didn’t even belong to me!  A friend had lent me his vinyl copy pending his return to home!  Her voice, the delightful broad American sound and the depth of the lyrics won me over and I will always associate that album with that time.  In the confusing post-world of 911 Natalie Merchant released probably her best solo work in Motherland and the whole album, and particularly the title track speak as a voice of reason.

But it’s this song from 1992’s Our Time in Eden that has to be part of any forty year countdown.  These Are Days is for those moments when life can’t be better.  When everything has come together – whether it is a weekend with friends, the best of years, the culmination of achievements.  This is the song that defines these moments better than any I know.  It was the Maniacs top hit and played for many years at proms across America.  It needs to be read as much as it is heard, hence I have printed the lyrics below

In 1992, another college band called REM had a rather big hit with their Automatic for the People album.  It was also rather good and they probably made a heck of a lot of money and everyone has heard of them.  But the Maniacs had something so much better going on for those moments, however fleeting.

<>

Natalie Merchant has after many years released a solo album which sounds as excellent as ever and is just finishing a brief tour of Britain.  The photo above is her and Whispering Bob Harris having a quick cuddle presumably before or after an interview for his show?  I love the simple pleasure in the moment.  These are days you’ll remember.

These are days you’ll remember
Never before and never since, I promise 
will the whole world be warm as this 
and as you feel it, you’ll know it’s true 
that you are blessed and lucky 
it’s true, that you are touched by something 
that will grow and bloom in you

These are days you’ll remember

When May is rushing over you with desire 
to be part of the miracles you see in every hour 
you’ll know it’s true, that you are blessed and lucky 
it’s true, that you are touched by something 
that will grow and bloom in you

These are the days 
that you might fill with laughter 
until you break

These days you might feel a shaft of light 
make its way across your face 
and when you do 
you’ll know how it was meant to be 
see the signs and know their meaning

You’ll know how it was meant to be 
hear the signs and 
know they’re speaking to you 
to you

Advertisements