International Women's Day

 

On International Women’s Day, I’d like to honour two great women musicians/songwriters who have helped keep my music going: Loretta Lynn and Iris DeMent. (More to come!)

I know the feeling of being stopped in my tracks to write a tune after listening to one of my many musical heroes. It reminds me of a favourite scene in Coal Miner’s Daughter when Sissy Spacek playing Loretta Lynn leans in close to the radio to hear her favourite songs then hushes everyone in the room so she can sit down to write her own songs. I have leaned in close to listen to Loretta Lynn sing I’m a Honky Tonk Girl and know that same scene from my own life of trying to quiet a room so I can focus on a song, especially during the years of mothering a small child.

I wrote Sleepy Baby after my son turned two, writing it in bits and pieces whenever I could steal a moment away for myself. The song was actually born when I discovered gardening one summer, but really comes from years of listening to Iris DeMent’s album, My Life. I think Sleepy Baby was directly inspired by her song, Easy’s Getting Harder Every Day. I got to see Iris DeMent perform at Hugh’s Room in Toronto years ago. The best part of that concert was singing her songs in the cab on the way to the concert with Dotty Cormier (Heartbreak Hill), who is also an incredible singer- songwriter We stood side by side in the back as Iris DeMent sang and both wept.

You can hear Sleepy Baby on Itunes, Spotify and Apple Music and on Youtube

Sleepy Baby
Planting my garden late at night
Hoping things will work out alright
Planting by the light of the moon,
Maybe this time something’s gonna bloom

Baby won’t sleep now three nights in a row,
He’s tossing and turning and rolling on the floor
Mommy and daddy can’t get no rest
Look in their eyes but there’s nothing left
Oh pretty baby you were made out of love.

Can see it in your eyes, the way they sparkle in the sun
We gave you all the love we had
We better get some soon cause I think we’re gonna crash

Go to sleep Sami, sleepy little baby
Go to sleep Sami,
Sleepy, Little baby

It’s the middle of the summer in the middle of the night
Boom cars are blaring,the street lights are bright
The fans are going, we’re trying to beat the heat
Just looking for some time and little bit of peace

I never thought I could dig so low
Look in the well but it’s dry as a bone
But I’m planting my garden late at night
Hoping that things will work out alright

Go to sleep Sami, sleepy little baby
Go to sleep Sami,
Sleepy, Little Bab

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Laura Repo