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Songs from your Father/Dad

Updated on May 27, 2016
Tracy Lynn Conway profile image

Music touches my soul, when I am not singing, dancing or playing an instrument, I am writing articles about the songs that I hold dear.

Silhouette of a father assisting a son while climbing.
Silhouette of a father assisting a son while climbing. | Source

“I've learned that regardless of your relationship with your parents, you'll miss them when they're gone from your life.”

— Maya Angelou

Although we all know it will happen one day, losing a father can be shocking and devastating. This experience can leave us feeling emotions that we have never felt before, feelings which may be hard to express and share with loved ones because each of us experiences loss differently. Each of us travels along a unique journey of grieving. Those around us might not completely understand or be able to console us. Our unique path of grieving helps us to accept the empty space where our father used to be. The healing process is a deeply emotional one and music can assist us and be a great comfort. Music offers us a kinship, a kind of bond with the song and its writer, while music has universal and shared healing properties, especially therapeutic when songs are written from a father’s point of view.

An empty space appears in your life when you lose a father, someone you may have counted on, someone you knew so well, someone that was always part of your life, now gone forever. You are left to stand without him, on your own two feet; this is scary, no matter what age you are at the time. Who knows you better than your father? Even if the relationship was rocky at times, he will always be your father, he is irreplaceable. You are now left feeling like there is an empty space; as if not only your father, but a part of yourself is now missing.

Music can help with grieving.
Music can help with grieving. | Source

Now you are left to grieve, yet hopefully you have support along the way. While each of us grieve in the same order, typically we will go through five stages of grief. The five stages of grieving include denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and ultimately, acceptance. Moving through these processes relies heavily on acknowledging your feelings in order to reach the next stage. Losing a close family member such as your father registers high on the stress scale, so this type of grieving can be more impactful than other losses.

"The power of music to integrate and cure. . . is quite fundamental. It is the profoundest nonchemical medication."

— Oliver Sacks

Music then, can be a great solace through the process. Music can allow feelings to arise that may be blocked or repressed. Songs written from a father to a child may help you remember your dad; remember the love he had for you, and how it felt to be loved by him. Though these are examples of the songs that have helped me along my own journey towards healing, and each song offers a different perspective on a dad's love. If you have lost a father as well, it is my hope that this collection of songs might help you heal and may even conjure some fond memories, bringing a smile to your face when you need it most.

“Someday I will be gone, but lullabies go on and on, that’s how you and I will be.”

— Billy Joel - Lullaby

Please take the time to explore these song choices as they may be helpful, not only for those grieving, but for those looking to explore the loving relationship between a father and child as well.

You are Not Alone – Michael Jackson

If you are missing your Dad or a loved one, this melody is sure to hit a nerve and maybe trigger some tears. When we lose a loved one, at first there is a shock and feeling of loss, but this is often followed by the feeling that they still exist, that they are still with us. Written by R. Kelly and sung by Michael Jackson, this slow tempo song along with its lyrics is touching, soothing and consoling.

Lyrics to watch for:

You never said goodbye

Someone tell me why

Did you have to go

And leave my world so cold

I’m Already There – Lonestar

Written by Lonestar lead singer, McDonald, I’m Already There was inspired by a phone call with his 4 year old son during a long separation. This song also relates to missing a father who has passed because although they are physically gone, their spirit lives on and they are always “there.”

Lyrics to watch for:

I'm already there

Take a look around

I'm the sunshine in your hair

I'm the shadow on the ground

I'm the whisper in the wind

Fields of Gold - Sting

“Fields of Gold” is about those beautiful times that loved ones share together, the occasions that turn even sweeter and more golden in our memories. Although written and made famous by Sting, “Fields of Gold” has been covered by many famous artists, most notably by Eva Cassidy. This is a haunting song whose lyrical imagery brings you to a reflective and emotional place.

Lyrics to watch for:

Many years have passed since those summer days among the fields of barley

See the children run as the sun goes down among the fields of gold

You'll remember me when the west wind moves upon the fields of barley

Fields of Gold - Eva Cassidy

Your Song – Elton John

A very well known and loved ballad, written in 1967, this is one of the first songs that Elton John put music to Bernie Taupin lyrics. This musical duo went on to write a seemingly infinite number of hit songs and albums. The music of “Your Song” has a melancholy undertone but a message of undying love and a request to be accepted for who we are. This song could have easily been written by a father to his beloved child.

Lyrics to watch for:

My gift is my song

And this one's for you

And you can tell everybody this is your song

Yellow – Cold Play

“Yellow” is a song about loving someone and the willingness to do anything for them. Your father could have composed this for you because it is through their love that they want so much for their children. Chris Martin sings “Look at the stars, Look how they shine for you, And everything you do.” It's easy to see these lyrics having been written by a loving father.

Always on your Mind - Willie Nelson

If your Dad was not often around, this song could very well apply to you. Some fathers find it hard to be close to their children, but this does not mean they didn’t feel love towards them. This song talks to this sentiment of love from a distance.

Lyrics to watch for:

Maybe I didn't love you

Quite as often as I could have

Maybe I didn't treat you

Quite as good as I should have…

But you were always on my mind

Lullabye (Goodnight, My Angel) - Billy Joel

When singer songwriter Billy Joel’s daughter asked him about death he answered her question with a song, a spiritually moving musical masterpiece called “Lullabye (Goodnight, My Angel).” When discussing the song, Joel explained his view that although we die, we live on in the hearts of those we’ve loved.

Lyrics to watch for:

Someday your child may cry, and if you sing this lullaby

Then in your heart there will always be a part of me

Someday we'll all be gone

But lullabies go on and on

They never die

That's how you and I will be

Somewhere Out There - Linda Ronstadt and Aaron Neville

This captivating song from the Disney movie “An American Tale”, takes its inspiration from Beethoven’s well known Pathetique no. 8 2nd movement. This version of the duet sung by Linda Ronstadt and Aaron Neville is a moving interpretation. Although the song is more about love surviving time and distance, this enchanting song imparts the message that we can feel loved no matter where we are because love transcends both time and space.

Lyrics to watch for:

Somewhere out there, if love can see us through (love can see us through)

Then we'll be together somewhere out there

Out where dreams come true

© 2015 Tracy Lynn Conway


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    • Perspycacious profile image

      Demas W Jasper 

      3 years ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      I treated this subject, too. Not with music, just with words. Good topic.


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