Understand the Blues (contains free song download)

335-copyIt isn’t always necessary to know someone very well to figure out if something’s disturbing them. Sometimes, you don’t have to know them at all. Language isn’t important, either. It’s not necessary to understand them or to even hear them speak. You can see they have the blues.

Once, while standing in line at the post office, I noticed the sound of several dialects being spoken by others in line and at the counter. I heard what I believed to be Spanish, Middle Eastern, perhaps Romanian or Czechoslovakian and my own good old Southern-style English. Each person speaking was talking with someone who sounded like they did, either in a native tongue or in English with a thick accent. I wondered how much we could understand each other if we were all in one conversation.

Then, it dawned on me. If one of us needed help or had to communicate that something was wrong, we would all immediately understand. Perhaps we couldn’t get the specifics, but we’d know they were unhappy. We could tell the blues was in ‘em.

The idea for this song came from that moment of realization in 2000 in the Bellevue, Tennessee post office that no matter what language is native to any of us, we all Understand the Blues.

Click here to listen and download Understand the Blues free. (free download through Feb. 8, 2017).

Understand the Blues
Words and Music by Les Kerr
©2000 Publisher: O.N.U. Music (ASCAP)

We’re going multi-cultural in this wide world of ours
It’s putting quite a strain on all of my linguistic powers
If you’re not bilingual, you can’t get your business done
But I found me a way I can relate to everyone
Spaniards hablan Espanol and Frenchmen parlez vous
But you can speak my language if you Understand the Blues

The Blues is spoken ‘round the world by women and by men
By anyone who’s lost a dollar, peso, pound or yen
You’re lover leaves you cryin’; your l’amour bids you adieu
Then you know what I’m talkin’ ‘bout, you Understand the Blues

Music is the universal language, so they say
But the most common dialect is in the Blues today
This accent’s heard in every voice, no matter what they speak
It’s part of every tongue from Mandalay to Mozambique
From Australia’s land Down Under to the mountains of Peru
Ain’t a living, breathing soul who doesn’t Understand the Blues

We know about the differences between each foreign land
We say, “They speak a language no one here can understand.”
The nations search for common ground but I know this is true:
In one way they’re united ‘cause they Understand the Blues

Ain’t a living, breathing soul who doesn’t Understand the Blues

Text and photos copyright 2017 by Les Kerr


About Les Kerr

Les Kerr is a songwriter, recording artist, journalist and author originally from the Gulf Coast now based in Nashville, Tennessee. Learn More about Les at www.leskerr.com
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2 Responses to Understand the Blues (contains free song download)

  1. katkennedy506087046 says:

    Great song to enjoy with my Community Coffee this morning, Les! Thanks for sharing your talent! I do believe music is the world’s common language.

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