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Missing Dan

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loveintimesmIt’s been almost two years since Dan Fogelberg died, succumbing to prostate cancer at 56 years old. While I’ve never been one to fawn over celebrities, his death hit me hard, as I related here.

His wife, Jean, just released a new album of his music that he finished in 2006 while fighting the cancer, then put them away. He asked her to release the album after his death.

The digital files were available on Aug.13, what would have been his 58th birthday. I downloaded the files today, and honestly, it was so classic Fogelberg and so wonderful and so sad and so evocative of so many memories, that I actually teared up.

Remarkably, the songs do not seem introspective for a man who knows he’s dying. When I heard that a posthumous album would be released, I presumed Dan would look at the process he was enduring and bleed it into his music… like he’d done with struggling with his fame, new love, lost love, divorce, the state of the world, the environment, etc. Instead, he seems focused mostly on the present and his wife.

From what I’ve read, some of the songs were projects he’d started a while back, and after he became sick, he wanted to finish what he’d started. Perhaps he was just too sick to start navel gazing.

Anyway, the only song that falls into a “goodbye” category is the last song, Birds. While Dan wrote all of the songs except two, this one was penned by Neil Young. Doesn’t matter, I think it was his message to his wife, to us his fans, and to life.

The thing that made me tear up is the very last, sustained chord of Birds, the last song on his last album… it’s the same chord that starts his first album, the first song To the Morning… my favorite as I mentioned in my previous post. What a perfect circle. Thanks, Dan and Jean.

“In a spiral never-ending are we drawn toward the source,
Spinning at the mercy of an unrelenting force.
So we stare into the emptiness and fall beneath the weight
Circling the Nexus in a fevered dance with fate.
Wealthy the spirit that knows its own flight
Stealthy the hunter who slays his own fright
Blessed the traveler who journeys the length of the light”

From the song, “Nexus” by Dan Fogelberg


Written by blogicalinks

August 21, 2009 at 6:50 pm

Posted in Whatever

2 Responses

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  1. Cheryl,
    I enjoyed reading your post about Dan Fogelberg’s album. I can’t hear a song by him without thinking of you! I could probably only name a handful his songs, but “To the Morning” is one I won’t forget. I’d like to hear “Birds”. On a lighter note, Marty and I used to get into a spirited discussion over and over whenever we would hear a DF song because he would always say “Hey… that’s Dan Fogelberg. He was the lead singer for the band “America”. Can you believe that??!! L0L.

    Lynn Thomas

    August 23, 2009 at 11:56 pm

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