My son Bent had a little trouble with going to sleep this evening. In cases like these (which do not happen very often, bless him) I do what any responsible parent would do: try to make a quick analysis of the situation and act accordingly. On this occasion mister Fisserman jr. appeared to be very tired but something was keeping him from sufficiently relaxing which would allow him to fall into a deep and soothing sleep which would enable him to recharge his internal battery to be able to wake his mom and dad up in the way to early hour of the next morning.
I decided to carry him around in my arms and thought of a gentle and comforting song that would make him feel loved and safe. As an enormous fan of bands like Radiohead, Tindersticks, Eels, Kashmir, Sparklehorse and so forth, I was sort of expecting something along those lines to pop into my mind. It didn’t. The song that came to the surface and which I, apparently, still know by heart, was ‘Daniel’ by Elton John.
I still remember exactly where and when I heard that song for the first time. I was on holiday with my parents (in Delft, of all places) and had received some extra pocket-money. It was the year after Elton scored a big hit with his song ‘Nikita’, which was the first single I ever bought. I spent the pocket-money on an Elton John ‘The very best of’ album ( a special edition album, which was apparently only released in Holland). My parents were a bit surprised, but on the other hand, I had always been somewhat strange perhaps. The album cover was light blue and there was a photo of Elton, wearing a straw hat and singing. The moment we came back form the shop I put on the record. ‘Daniel’ was an instant favorite then, and it still is. The music and lyrics are beautiful and every time I here I am still back in that apartment with my mum, dad and brother. Instantly trying to sing along to the lyrics I did not quite understand. It would be great if Bent ever found a song to give him such a wonderful feeling.
Oh, in case you were wondering. Even before I was done singing, I had a sleeping baby boy in my arms. Thanks sir Elton!
(ps. album picture taken from eltonography.com)