Song Of The Day - 03 Sep 2009: Babybird


Set 10 2009, 4h43

The Wallflowers / Babybird / Breach (11) / Oct 2000

This is the third in a thread of restart SotD selections. Of course, The Wallflowers are (were?) the band of Jakob Dylan, son of Bob and Sara Dylan. But oh, the irony of this selection.

This is the 11th "hidden" track at the end of the album. It's probably hidden because it quite stands out from the rest of the album, being a lullaby that sounds as if it is being sung to a music box. I think it's fantastic and is actually one of my two favorites, along with album-opener Letters From The Wasteland.

But it's also irony on a much deeper level than mere audible differences. Look at the lyrics:

"Now outside faces cry / With the tears of lonesome orphans / And behind every mask / is the face of another / Wherever you have been / wherever you took cover / No arms that pulled you in / could hold you like your mother"

Jakob Dylan may always be first and foremost identified by the public as Bob Dylan's son, and is likely the subject of yet another lullaby, Forever Young. But he's his own man, too, with a wife, and family, and successful career in music of his own doing, without his father's involvement. There's a sense in the lyrics of a father's pride as he watches his children grow up.

In an interview with the L.A. Times, Jakob says "The song is my subtle way of turning the table on things at the end of the record. I operate so much under the connection people make of my family, and this song is kind of pushing things forward. It's like a letter to my wife and children." In another interview, Jakob told New York Magazine that "Babybird" is a song that "was my way of turning the tables a little bit: writing a song for my kids as opposed to always being the son of someone."

Bob had to make a break with his fanbase while at the same time respecting them and thanking them for what they had done for him. Jakob is also acknowledging the start his family gave him, but has also flown the coop, knowing that in time his own kids are going to do the same.

"When all my colors fade / And my wings, they've turned to leather / I'll know the reasons why / God let me get older / When all my days are through / And I fly these hills no longer / I'll lay beneath the stars / And I'll watch you flying over"

We'll come back to solo Jakob Dylan in a couple of entries, but next we'll go back and take another look at the cover of Bringing It All Back Home for our next tangent.

\m/ (ò_ó) \m/