Blackbird Fly into the Light of the Dark Black Night

If you are young (as in younger than me), you may never have heard or even heard of Kenny Rankin. He was a singer-songwriter who floated quietly through the music scene for nearly 40 years. Cool and velvety, he was often referred to as a “singer’s singer” and a “songwriter’s songwriter.”

His cover of Blackbird is nothing less than inspirational and was so impactful on Paul McCartney that Rankin was asked by the former Beatle to represent him and John Lennon when they were inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

I happened upon Kenny Rankin late one night in a local Chicago jazz club in 1981 and was forever smitten. He is an acquired taste I suppose. For me, it was his ability to convey deep emotion in his words and his works that created an enduring bond.

Kenny passed away yesterday, leaving a small but indelible set of footprints in the sand. He will be missed by many, including me. You were only waiting for this moment to be free.

In the morning fun
When no one will be drinking any more wine
I’ll wake the sun up
By givin’ him a fresh air full of the wind cup
And I won’t be found in the shadows hiding sorrow
And I can wait for fate to bring around to me
Any part of my tomorrow, tomorrow

‘Cause it’s oh, so peaceful here
There’s no one bending over my shoulder
Nobody breathing in my ear
Oh, so peaceful here

In the evening shadows are callin’ me
And the dew settles in my mind
And I think of friends in the yesterday
When my plans were giggled in rhyme
I had a son while on the run
And his love brought a tear to my eye
And maybe some day he’ll up and say
“We had a pretty nice time”, oh, oh, oh, my

‘Cause it’s oh, so peaceful here
There’s no one bending over my shoulder
Nobody breathing in my ear
Oh, so peaceful here

Jim Sweeney

Jim is a veteran of the agency industry and the founder of Sweeney. He is uncommonly passionate about the idea of creating and implementing insanely great marketing campaigns that achieve insanely great results. He pioneered the full-service, full-circle agency model and continues to forge new ideas in an ever-changing industry. And he is accessible to everyone about anything, seemingly all the time, serving as a mentor to all agency personnel and clients.