Last month, I shared with you Visa om ett Rosenblad by Cornelis Vreeswijk. Today I thought we could listen to another version of it, sung by Cornelis’ son Jack. If I had to say which version I like more I’d have a really hard time because I find them both really beautiful and gripping, each in its own way. I wrote the translation and shared some thoughts about the song in the post with the original version.
Today I’d like to share with you a lovely, kind of bittersweet and very jazzy song from Cornelis Vreeswijk. The melody to this song was actually composed by Georg Riedel, who is a Czech-born Swedish jazz musician and who, after Cornelis’ death, released an album called Cornelis vs Riedel, with his arrangements of Cornelis’ poems, sung by his daughter Sarah and Nikolai Dunger, several of which I’ve shared on here in the past.
I like this song for quite a few different reasons, but I think mostly because, while it sounds like a very clear allegory of the oh so commonly occurring and depicted, classic theme in romantic relationships where a man manipulates a woman just to hurt her and eventually leave, over the years, as I’ve been listening to this song again and again, I have realised that it also works as an allegory for many other less obvious things, or has not so obvious mini allegories within it, though no idea if it was a conscious/deliberate thing on Cornelis’ part. Perhaps it’s just one of those things in which everyone sees something a little different, or the same individual sees something a little different in it with each listen. And then I’m pretty sure that, on a more personal level for Cornelis, Ann-Katrin Rosenblad (a character who frequently appears in his songs and poems), or her real-life counterpart(s) must also be present somewhere here, it must be about a “rosenblad” for a reason. Regardless, I like how sensitively all of these allegories are handled here. I also do really like it musically, even though regular people on here know that I am generally not overly big on jazz. The translation below is Bibielz. Bibielz had no particular issues writing it, because the original lyrics are quite easy and uncomplicated language-wise, so it should be more or less alright.
Once upon a time, there was a little rose petal
And the rose on which she grew was red
Then one day she fell off because the rose was dead
Then an icy wind passed by, then she was happy
Because the wind was a cheerful and fiery guy
Who was on his way from south to north
He blew her ear full of beautiful words
Come, sweetheart, said the wind, come
Then she got dizzy
She couldn’t resist what he said
She gave him everything he asked for
He brought her with him to a big rich city
Here will the two of us live, he said.
And she said yes
But the wind was an unfaithful specimen
Who only wanted to tumble around in the sky
He blew her away from himself, she fell down into the mud