Wednesday, March 11, 2015


I wanted to share another Al Stewart related memory of mine.

I'd forgotten this, but he played this song last week and it brought back the memory of this day.

Back in the mid 90's, I lived in Connecticut.

Not my favorite place to live, but when my brother got relocated there (the same brother who introduced me to Al's music, coincidentally), it was a little more bearable, as I got to spend time with his family, including his infant daughter.

During that time, Al released his thirteenth studio album, Between The Wars, a mostly acoustic effort with songs focused on the period from 1918 to 1939. As with many of his post-seventies records, the critics loved it, and I was the only one who bought it.

Anyway, shortly after the album came out, my brother, young niece (maybe a year and a half old) and I were driving in the car (I think on a visit to Philadelphia) and my niece would not stop crying.

And this little girl had some pipes!

Well I had the new Al album in the CD player, and this song came on:

After a minute, my brother whispered "look," nodding at the back seat just as I realized the crying had stopped. My niece was smiling and bopping her head in time to the music.

It actually works-the swing beat captures kids' attention and his voice is kind of soothing.

I wonder how many other parents were lucky enough to have this album when their young ones were at that age where they struggled to be understood and the frustration came out in tears.

I wonder if my niece ever hears Al Stewart on the radio, finds herself liking his voice, and wonders why.

I wonder if my brother remembers this day.

All you parents of young kids, go get a copy of Between The Wars (or look for it on some of his "hits" compilations-I know it's on On The Border and the two-disc Definitive Collection).

It's a great album and it'll help with those crying kids!


  1. What a fun and enchanting song. I can see why she was enjoying it so much. So far I have yet to hear an Al Stewart song I don't like.

    1. He really is a great songwriter...if you ever get the chance, see him live (he plyed two dates in Central City, CO in January-looks like a casino-not sure where that is in relation to you).

  2. I can totally see why a kid would love this song. Great story.

    My ex used to play Hall and Oates (among others) when they were in the car. (He never moderated his music listening to reflect their presence.) Anyway, when the song Maneater came on he'd turn it down to tell them it was specifically written for their mother. I think I choked the first time he did it, but it became routine. I wondered when the day would come they'd resent that... but since they still don't have a close relationship with their mom, I guess it doesn't bother them.

    1. Granted, I only know you through blog and e-mail, but whenever you talk about your ex I wonder why the heck he would have let you get away.

      However, stories like this one leave no confusion as to why you escaped!

      For purposes of keeping this blog PG, I'll say, "what a jerk."

      I will say, however, that if I had had kids, I'd have weaned them on rock as young as possible.

      I'm not sure how long I could have suffered Barney CD's.

      I do have a handful of children's albums by rock artists that I would have started with...I wouldn't have been force feeding infants AC/DC!

    2. "I will say, however, that if I had had kids, I'd have weaned them on rock as young as possible.

      I'm not sure how long I could have suffered Barney CD's."

      My kids were weaned on Nirvana, Counting Crows, and the Cranberries. That work?

    3. I've got it, CW-we form a band and play Barney songs with arrangements that sound like Nirvana!

      I'll wear the purple dino suit with a Cobain wig, red flannel shirt and sing with my head pointed at the floor.

      Good choices!

  3. I never realized that Stewart had so many albums out. I guess I've only heard about 2 of them.

    This is a fine song and I particularly like the jazzy violin. Shades of Django and Grappelli!

    Arlee Bird
    A to Z Challenge Co-host
    Tossing It Out

    1. When Al played it last week he cited Django as an influence, Lee.

      His first album was released in 1967-Year Of The Cat was his 7th release.

      By my count he's released 17 albums of original material and 4 live albums.