Give us a tune: “Now Be Thankful”

By Johnny Foreigner

Occasionally there comes a song that feels like a traditional folk song but in fact, isn’t. “The Long Black Veil” was not discovered by song-catchers in Appalachia, but was written in 1959 by the Nashville team of Danny Dill and Marijohn Wilkin.”She Moved Through the Fair” was composed by Padraic Colum. “Edelweiss” was not an Austrian folk song, but written by Rogers and Hammerstein, as a late addition to their show The Sound of Music (the very last song the team wrote together.)

Accordingly, “Now Be Thankful” was not written not in the 16th century, but by Richard Thompson in 1970.

When the stone is grown too cold to kneel
In crystal waters I’ll be bound
Cold as stone, weary to the sounds upon the wheel

Now be thankful for good things below
Now be thankful to your maker
For the rose, the red rose blooms for all to know

When the fire is grown too fierce to breathe
In burning irons I’ll be bound
Fierce as fire, weary to the sound upon the wheel

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