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Tribute to Harry
Having read others and hearing of tributes to Harry triggered for me a
poem I wrote within days of his death. I first heard of his passing
around 9 or 10 p.m. that night on the F.M. station I listened to while
staying at the family cottage. Later that evening they played an hour
tribute covering all the favourites. It stands out as one of the first
true losses I ever experienced. Anyways, I wrote this poem in memory of
Harry. Be kind I was only 15 at the time :)
Your death came as a surprise
I was shocked, confused; I thought it was a dream.
My life stopped seemingly the moment yours did.
Yet, it will always be your music kept me alive just to have your
You showed me there was something other in the world than broken dreams.
Your words told more than a story, but of a life as no other can.
You showed me your best and your worst. Unforunately, the best die
first and the worst, of course, last.
But only this one time I wished you the worst there ever was just so you
could be near my heart once again forever more.
Well, certainly not Keats. Thankfully Harry has always been close to my
heart through his actions and words. Long may his memory shine....and
thanks for listening.
From: James Cove
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"Oh, if a man tried to take his time on earth and prove before he died what one man's life could be worth, I wonder what would happen to this world?" -- Harry Chapin, 1942-1981.
The Latest Release
Sniper & Other Love Songs
In 1972, Harry released
Sniper & Other Love Songs.
Thirty years would pass before the album would ever reach the CD format. Sniper was finally re-released in June, 2002.
Originally given a working title of Sweet City Suite, the album tells the story of various characters one might run into in
a city. The album features the original studio versions of Chapin classics "A Better Place to Be" and "Circle." But
perhaps more importantly (as those songs are already well-distributed on compilation CDs), the album features seemingly
lost Chapin stories, including "And the Baby Never Cries," "Burning Herself," "Barefoot Boy," and "Woman Child."
Sniper is for the seasoned Chapin fan. New fans would do better to check out
Live. But for Chapin fans who have reached the level of the
Dance Band on the Titanic album, this is the next step. Slightly over-produced and having a little of the "forced"
feel that some of Harry's studio albums possess, this album does not capture the powerfully live Harry Chapin. Nonetheless,
it captures Harry's great iconoclastic songwriting--Harry takes the story song to new heights here. But the album works best
for those ready for it; don't buy it until you are ready to appreciate it!