October 12

Don Williams Reflections V: Working Man’s Son

This gem of old wisdom was written by Bob Regan and Jim Collins.

 It sure fits Don Williams as one who reminisces his humble beginnings and up to his present success. As the album’s title suggests, this song is also a reflection of  Don’s. For seven decades, he had lived and observed enough to believe every word written for the Working Man’s Son. (By now, fans should be familiar that the Gentle Giant selects his songs based on their honesty, simplicity, and how they make him feel.)

On the flipside, singing this song in his 70’s is akin to wishing for more years ahead.

I’d like to think I’ll still be here
To celebrate a hundred years
With a lit cigar and an Ice cold beer
Latin heart and thinking clear
But if I’m not I’ve had my run
Not bad for a working man’s son

I doubt if Don were merely reciting those words. The thought expressed in the lines above could have crossed his mind as well. (Aw! Would we not want that? I really had hoped he would stay longer.) Nevertheless, his legacy of interpreting songs with that assured voice and echoing with truths about life would be perpetually remembered.

Back to the song, another angle to consider is from the perspectives of younger men. Even a quick listen to the Working Man’s Son would surely bring them memories of their fathers. How did their dads raise them? Were they raised to be strong, ethical, and men of character? Of course, there were mistakes made along the way, but how did they get through? Whichever state these men would have reached now, could they look back and also say “Not bad for a working man’s son?”

What about you dear readers? What is your reflection on this fifth song of Don’s 2014 album?


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