Tuesday, April 28, 2020

I Hope You Dance—Murfin Home Confinement Music Festival 2020

I Hope You Dance sung by Lee Ann Womack.

I never thought of the 2000 Country and pop crossover mega-hit I Hope You Dance as likely fodder for the Home Confinement Music Festival until Billy Seger sang if for our Tree of Life UU Congregation’s Flower Communion service last Sunday.  But of course it’s perfect.

Lee Ann Womack's top hit album.
I Hope You Dance was written by Mark D. Sanders and Tia Sillers  for Country diva Lee Ann Womack who recorded it with Sons of the Desert, a band fronted by lead vocalist Drew Womack and his brother Tim on lead guitar.  The brothers Womack were no relation to Lee Ann. The song reached #1 on both the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks and Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks charts, and # 14 on the Billboard Hot 100. It is considered Womack’s signature song is the only Billboard #1 for both Womack and Sons of the Desert.  It won the 2001 Country Music Association (CMA), Academy of Country Music (ACM), Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI), ASCAP, and Broadcast Music Incorporated (BMI) awards for Song of the Year. It also won the Grammy Award for Best Country Song and was nominated for Song of the Year.

                                                                                The Sons of the Desert in 1994.                                                                                                                          
The song was written from the point of view of an unknown narrator to an unidentified person—a slightly quirky love song.  Womack immediately thought of it as a song from a parent to a child or teen going through a tough time.  It was an unexpected hit with young people, not the usual Country audience and became a staple at proms and graduations.  It was also for several years the favorite song for father/bride dances at weddings.
At her request Womack sang I Hope You Dance at poet Maya Angelou’s funeral service.
The song also became words of comfort for those experiencing pain or loss—which makes it perfect for this context.

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