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JOY - 49 years to write a simple song?

"Joy" is a simple song that I am very proud of. Its story goes over 49 years - depending how you look at it:

1968 the Beatles published their "white album". On it is a song by John Lennon that intrigued me, it is called "Dear Prudence". Having read his "John Lennon - In his own write", "A Spaniard in the works", and - of course - had heard the rumours about "Lucy in the sky of diamonds" I thought " he must have had something in mind to choose the name "Prudence" of all things. I was sure the song must have been meant to be allegoric or at least ambiguous.

I was wrong, though. The song meant Prudence Farrow who was at Maharishi Mahesh Yogy's ashram together with the Beatles and other famous people. The Beatles though that Prudence might be depressive because she secluded herself from their company. So John wrote a simple song to cheer her up. That's it. No hidden message, no allegory. I only discovered the history of the song a few days ago.

2001 I visited the Kunsthistorisches Museum (Museum of Art History) of Vienna. There I was fascinated by a little wooden sculpture called "Vanitas" (Michel Erhart, dating from the 15th century). You can view it from three sides to see various states of a woman's life: young, beautiful girl, grown up woman, and 'old hag' (excuse my French, but you'll get the idea...). I returned several times to marvel at the sculpture. Back home I remembered "Dear Prudence" and decided to write a song about vanity, a term and name that seemed to suggest itself for an allegoric song. Much more so than prudence:

Vanity, you do look old
the smooth skin of your youth got definitely stained
age spots and wrinkles where once a proud beauty reigned
there's no charm and no grace
in your old worn out face
you've lost your good looks - there is no denying
the time you've wasted is why you should be crying
Vanity, it feels so cold


... and so on.

2012
I wrote the lyrics to "Joy".

And a few weeks ago I added the tune.

On the one hand "Joy" is a very simple song, on the other it is all that "Prudence" had meant to me but never was. You'll find obvious references to "Prudence" it its first two verses.

Hey Joy, come and join me
let's fool around and have some fun
it's such a fine day today
so let's get crazy in the sun

Joy, when you smile at me I feel so good
Joy, when we're making love I get so high
Joy, when we're talking I feel understood
Joy, when you're with me then I can fly

Hey Joy, please stay awhile
you put a smile upon my face
you're always carefree as a kid
you make my life gather pace

Joy, when you smile at me I feel so good
Joy, when we're making love I get so high
Joy, when we're talking I feel understood
Joy, when you're with me then I can fly

Hey Joy, don't leave me yet
while you're here the time flies by
when you're around I feel so free
all sorrows fade into the sky

Joy, when you smile at me I feel so good
Joy, when we're making love I get so high
Joy, when we're talking I feel understood
Joy, when you're with me then I can fly

and all sorrows fade into the sky