Thursday, November 22, 2012

Turkey Tunes: 10 Songs for Thanksgiving Day

Fourteen years ago, in 1998, I spent Thanksgiving Day in Queens, N.Y., at the home of my then-boyfriend's big sister and her family. As we sat around the turkey feast, we each listed everything we had to be thankful for that year. I was pleasantly surprised that no one in attendance mentioned anything having to do with material possessions, a lucrative job or random physical attributes. We were all about love, peace and harmony that day, that year, and that, I suppose, was one more reason to be thankful.

I can't recall everything that was on my list, but I'm pretty sure I forgot the one thing for which I'm grateful every year: music.

Happy Thanksgiving Day! Love, listen and enjoy!

"Kind and Generous" Natalie Merchant If you have one person you can sing this to, then you've already got more to be thankful for than most.

"I Want to Thank You" Alicia Myers When you talk about thank-you songs, you can't not mention a certain early '80s R&B classic.

"Thanks for My Child" Cheryl "Pepsii" Riley Why spend only Mother's Day being grateful for the second greatest love of all?

"Thank You Every Day" Deee-Lite Thank God for the early '90s!

"Thank You World" World Party Another reason to be thankful for the early '90s: World Party's pair of near-perfect psychedelic pop-rock albums, 1990's Goodbye Jumbo and 1993's Bang!. YouTube is not allowing me to post this Jumbo track, so click here to listen and to watch.

"Thank You World" The Statler Brothers Right back at them! And I'm thankful to the Statler Brothers for providing the soundtrack to a significant chunk of my formative years.

"Pilgrim" Eric Clapton Though we can thank the 16th President of the United States (currently being revived to Oscar-caliber effect by Daniel Day-Lewis in Lincoln) for making Thanksgiving Day a national holiday in 1863, if those earliest settlers hadn't landed at Plymouth Rock, chances are you'd be at work today. So be thankful to them, too.

"Indian Reservation" Paul Revere & the Raiders I would be remiss if I didn't acknowledge the second most unfortunate aspect of colonial times on Thanksgiving, since Native Americans played such a crucial role in the first T-Day. The way they were treated by the U.S. forefathers would rival slavery for sheer shamefulness had the Native Americans been totally defenseless.

"Wild Turkey" Lacy J. Dalton I've never been particularly fond of Thanksgiving's centerpiece meat, and I can live without the man-meat version, too.

"All Is Full of Love" Bjork No, it's not a "thank you" song, and there are no turkey cameos in the lyrics or in the video (which happens to be one of my favorites of all time), but in the end, what more do we have to be thankful for than being all full of love, whether it's romantic love, friendship love, family love or self love.

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