As the dark and rainy season enfolds us, what to do? Embrace it back, as so many musical artists have, by cozying up to some of the countless odes to rain. Some of the best:
‘Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain’
This twangy, vivid serenade to lost love by Fred Rose is a heartbreaker in the great Hank Williams version, and since then it’s been covered beautifully by so many singers, from Willie Nelson to Brandi Carlile.
‘Box of Rain’ One of the Grateful Dead’s sweetest tunes, offering hope and hippie wisdom to someone who’s hurting. After all, it’s only a box of wind and water so “believe it if you need it, if not just pass it on …” ‘Rain’
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John Lennon said this Beatles song was written about people who moan about the weather all the time, stupid buggers. But the disdainful lyric comes wrapped in shimmering harmonies and chiming guitars.
‘I Can’t Stand the Rain’
Then again, Ann Peebles has a point, in her searing lament to the kerplopping drops that begin this soul classic and bring back agonizingly sweet memories.
“It kind of feels like I’m drownin’ in the Lord’s pain/ Until the sun comes out and shines again.” R&B prophetess Mary J. Blige lays it on the line with help from rapper Ja Rule, invoking the rain (and the words of Marvin Gaye) to cleanse our troubled spirits.
‘Singin’ in the Rain’
If you can’t beat it, join it. Or better yet, watch that clip of Gene Kelly dance-sloshing through puddles down the street in a downpour. The number from the classic film of the same title is guaranteed to banish (at least for a bit) a weather-induced funk.
Misha Berson, Seattle Times theater critic