Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Top Ten Graduation Songs

It is that blessed time of year when high school seniors everywhere kiss their childhood goodbye with a cap and gown ceremony and a song that will carry the moment's memory for all time. The song is one of the most important elements of any graduating class. To have a song that memorializes the mark you've left is like a proverbial initial-carving in the tree of life.

Okay, with exception to the ridiculous "tree of life" comment, you must at least admit the nostalgia that sweeps over you when your class song comes on the radio. According to teachers.net, 10 class songs stand out above the rest.

Here are the 10 songs that have been named (for better or for worse) "The Greatest Graduation Songs of All Time":
10. Where Everybody Knows Your Name - Theme from Cheers
9. Stand by Me - Ben E. King
8. Lean on Me - Al Green
7. The World's Greatest - R. Kelly
6. I Believe I Can Fly - R. Kelly
5. I Will Remember You - Sarah McLachlan
4. Graduation - Vitamin C
3. The Best of Times - Styx
2. A Moment Like This - Kelly Clarkson
1. Time of Your Life (Good Riddance) - Green Day

Are you satisfied or angry with these nominations? What would you add or subtract?

For what it's worth, teachers.net went on to include these titles as honorable mentions:
Here's to the Night - Eve 6
Times to Remember - Billy Joel
Closing Time - Semisonic
Sunscreen - Baz Luhrman
Never Say Goodbye - Bon Jovi
Graduate - Third Eye Blind

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

In Joy and in Sorrow

One night a couple months ago, I was driving with the windows down on the way home from the beach during one of our mild South Florida "cool" fronts, singing along with Dave Grohl, "Ain't it the life, ain't it the life..." Flying my hand up and down in the cool wind outside my car window, I sang along without a worry in the world. It was the same week my wife and I paid our final credit card payment on a debt we'd been carrying for over 2 years. It was easy to talk to the Lord during that time- to say, "God, Your ways are perfect and I trust in You."

Any day we think to look up from our road rage to see the majesty of God's creation, praise and petition seem to roll off the tongue almost effortlessly.

Only days later, my grandfather passed away. Limited by words, I have to simply say, "we were very close." At his bedside, only 7 hours before he died, my wife and I, along with my dad, uncle, aunt, and grandmother, sang hymns of praise- through trembling voices, weak with sobbing: "When all around my soul gives way, He then is all my hope and stay. On Christ the Solid Rock I stand, all other ground is sinking sand." "All I have needed, Thy hand hath provided; great is Thy faithfulness Lord unto me." "And Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight, the clouds be rolled back as a scroll."

It wasn't an "ain't it the life" moment. There would be no "hand flying" out the window on the way home. It wasn't effortless praise... it cost something. And yet somehow through the sorrow, I heard my lips repeat, "God, Your ways are perfect and I trust in You."

It struck me that God is God through times of joy and sorrow. Other "gods" require us to sacrifice one or the other, and yet our Heavenly Father is faithful through them both. Pause and give Him praise today- not because things are necessarily "right," but because all other ground is sinking sand.

Monday, May 12, 2008


I'm at Knox right now, taking a 20 minute break from studying. My last final exam of the semester starts in an hour and a half. I needed a mindless distraction, so I figured I'd post something new. Besides, it's been a while since I wrote anything and my "list of things to ramble about" is growing longer by the day.

Near the top of that list of things to share with my worldwide web community of 2 is to invite you to check out my new MySpace page: www.myspace.com/ryanbrasington. I only had time to get it up and running, so it's pretty bare bones for now, but I hope to use it as a place to post new music I'm writing and network with other writer/musician friends. I'll probably set up a facebook account this week too, but for now add me to your MySpace friends list and make me feel important. Hope you dig these and future tunes posted there.

More frequent blogging (not to mention my social life) to commence in T-minus 1 hour... Pray for me in this exam- it's going to be a beast.