“I’d rather laugh with the sinners…

…than cry with the saints.” That’s what popped out of the youngster’s mouth last night at dinner.

“Young lady, you will not quote Billy Joel lyrics in this household!” I mean really, she might as well have started listening to disco or something.

I think the spouse actually finished with, “Sinners have much more fun…” Honestly, and these two had been at church for hours in a pre-confirmation meeting. The spouse later redeemed his folly by proclaiming he’d been at a 1976 concert in OKC where Cheap Trick opened for the Kinks.

We are a house full of music. Only one has bothered to take up an instrument (drums), but we’ve all let music maintain an influence. The oldest is active in a garage band, the youngest wants to be the person that gets to choose music for films. I’m as happy listening to The White Stripes or Death Cab for Cutie as Bruce Springsteen. Throw in a little Rachmaninoff or Gershwin and I’m entertained for hours.

Music has a profound influence on culture, and I’m going to argue, even on politics. The other day presidential hopeful Senator Barack Obama referenced the rap hit “Dirt off your shoulder” by Jay-Z. Click that link at your own risk. And yes, we’re going there. I’m thinking Obama jumped the shark in his North Carolina speech. I’ll lay out the argument later today.

In the meantime, what lyrics do you live by? Maybe I’ll even share my own if you all agree to play along.


  1. Born to Be Wild!

  2. Wooly Bully! I love anything prior to the 70’s of almost any genre. Remind you husband that the price for the “fun” is an eternity of very hot torment. The saints will not be crying!

    “There will be no more death, or crying, or mourning, or pain.”

    “For by grace are you saved through faith, and that not of yourselves. It is the gift of God, not of works, lest any man should boast.” Also known as “sola dei”.

  3. It’s nice to be able to have a lot from which to choose but we could start with Don Schlitz’ lyrics from Mary Chapin Carpenter.

    “I’ve crossed lines of words and wire and both have cut me deep
    I’ve been frozen out and I’ve been on fire and the tears are mine to weep
    Now I can cry until I laugh and laugh until I cry
    So cut the deck right in half, I’ll play from either side”

  4. lyrics to live by says:

    “Learning to Fly” + “Square One” – Tom Petty
    “Live Like You Were Dying”- Tim McGraw

  5. (you can delete the other one)

    I have to say that you listening to Death Cab for Cutie earns you a lot of music cred with me. They’re my favorite.

    These songs are the “symphony” of my life. I’ve included Youtube links to each, too. Music (and sharing music) is a very important part of my life. Here goes:

    “Hurt” (cover) by Johnny Cash

    “Passenger Seat” by Death Cab for Cutie

    “Lightness” by Death Cab for Cutie

    “The Crane Wife 1 and 2” by The Decemberists

  6. “You can stand me up at the gates of Hell, but I won’t back down.”

    Tom Petty

    Played repeatedly when traveling to a conference once with Dan Ertl, Director of Community Development, City of Brookfield.

    I won that one, by the way.

  7. I love that one, Gato!