Last year I participated in an original radio show at Delta State University called, "The Bucket List." The premise was, "If you're lost on the backroads of the delta, what are ten songs you can't live without?"
I chose ten songs and shared them on the radio show as well as in a blog post, One of those songs was Mumford and Sons' "Awake, My Soul," which is a favorite of my dog, Isaac. Any time the song would play, Isaac would literally jump from his resting place, eyes bright and tail wagging. I've wondered, "What is it about this song that makes him so happy?"
I'm yet to answer that question, but Isaac's joy over "Awake My Soul" begged the questions of what other songs he liked. Over the past year, as I've listened to music at home or in the car, I've tried to pay attention to the songs that elicit a joyful response from him. The result is Isaac's own "bucket list." Click on any of them to watch You Tube video of each.
Flipping through movie channels one evening, I stumbled upon one where this song played. I don't remember the movie's title, but I do know it was not Ghost! Isaac's ears went up, and he began making a noise as if he were trying to sing along. Could my dirt-scratching pup be a hopeless romantic at heart?
We heard this song's premiere on CBS Saturday Morning, and the opening guitar strums had Isaac's tail thumping. The lyrics are fantastic, and his joy confirmed that Mary Chapin Carpenter is also one of his favorite artists (see #8 below)
The second half of that sentence is, "we'll be drinking champagne." What can I say? The dog likes fine drink and fine music!
On Sunday mornings I usually listen to a worship station on Pandora. Over the past year, Isaac responded to Michael W. Smith's arrangement of this beautiful worship song on more than one occasion.
We've heard a lot of arrangements of "Revelation Song" on the Pandora station, but Kari Jobe's studio recording was the one that got Isaac's attention one Sunday morning.
I love Jason Isbell's music, and "Traveling Alone" is one of my favorites for--well, traveling. When the song came on once, Isaac sat up and stuck his nose out the window, nodding his head in rhythm with the song.
Norah Jones' music is perfect for the end of the day, as day gives way to night. Isaac seems to like the whole album, but "Come Away With Me" made him literally smile in his sleep one evening.
Last year, I listened to Mary Chapin Carpenter's amazing album of the same name while decorating the house for Christmas. Isaac had peacefully slept on the couch until the title track started to play. He was suddenly wide awake and prancing around the tree.
Van Morrison is another favorite of ours on longer road trips. While he seems to enjoy a lot of Morrison's music, "Bright Side of the Road" has a beat that gets his tail thumping a little faster.
While most of the songs on Isaac's playlist are here because of the joy he expressed upon hearing them, this worship song caused him to bow his head. Literally. As we drove across Mississippi to our new home last summer with this CD playing, he turned from the window and bowed his head for most of the song. Maybe he was tired. But I like to believe that he was saying,"Thank you, Lord," as we embarked on a new adventure--of unbroken praise.
May your Thanksgiving be full of your favorite songs as well as we offer unbroken praise to the Giver of all good songs--and all good things, which we send to each of you this week!
Pastor Darian (and Paw-stor Isaac)