Bette Midler’s ‘The Rose’ would make an appearance. These kids were teenagers in the 90s. That song came out in 1979 and it’s still hanging around like a bad smell! Maybe it was on high rotation in the hospital the day they were born? Who knows? The only thing of which I am certain is that the entire time I was accompanying the little darlings on the piano; I would find myself distracted by the ridiculousness of the rhymes. I’d then have to reassure little Kristy or Kirsty (or whatever her bloody name was) that it wasn’t her voice or performance that was making me roll my eyes and shake my head. Honestly! I mean, can you really hear what you’re saying? Some crap about drowning reeds, aching needs and souls that bleed? You sure the songwriters didn’t pinch your Mum’s diary Kirsty...I mean Kristy? :-D
My heart fills with dread as my right hand moves to C and G in the upper register of the piano: ping – ping – ping – ping – ping – ping – ping. Now might be a good time to turn and run: nauseating piano ballad locked and loaded. Ray Charles did not triumph over handicaps and racist indignities just to have his instrument of choice used as a glockenspiel. Then finally, after a pause so pregnant it’s having triplets, Kristy warbles in with something about love being ‘a river that drowns the tender reed’. I’ve heard many sentiments about love in my time: love hurts, love steals, love is a battlefield, love is like oxygen, but a river that destroys plant life? Yeah right. We only need the ‘reed’ because it rhymes with ‘seed’ Bloody tragic overwrought metaphors. ‘Love is a razor’ (so you ‘bleed’) and ‘love is a hunger’ (that you ‘need’) until the final refrain where love is ‘a flower and you its only seed’. See how much trouble it was to get there? Later on we hear about the ‘heart that never learnt to dance’ because damn it we have to rhyme with the ‘dream afraid of waking that never takes a chance’ Phew. I’m exhausted. Have you heard anything more ridiculous? Well…have you?