Bass Drum

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Audio excerpt: Verse 1 and bridge

Lyrics & notes

5 Jun 1976

if I was a bass drum, I would beat for You
and if I was a bird, You know, I'd tweet for You
if I was a lemon I'd be sweet for You
but all that I can do is love You
oh, if I was a river, I would run for You
and if I was a playground, I'd have fun for You
if I was the West, I would be won for You
but the best that I can do is love You

I only wish that I had more to give
I only wish I had more lives to live for You
but everything I've got belongs to You, Lord
so take me, I am Yours—what else can I do?

oh, if I was a cannon, I would boom for You
and if I was a flower, I would bloom for You
if I was a building I'd make room for You
but the best that I can do is love You

oh, if I was a clock, I'd find the time for You
and if I was a poem, I would rhyme for You
show me any mountain and I'll climb for you
but as it is I have no sense of time
and I have never been too good at making rhyme
but show me any mountain and I'll climb
for You

℗ © Love's Music 1979, assigned to Creative Measures (ASCAP)

1979 Notes:

During the recording of the Freed album, Bobbi's parents came to listen as we did the vocals. Once when we went inside the control room to listen back, her mother had the strangest look on her face. I wondered if it really sounded that bad. (No, just kidding.) I asked her what was the matter and she said, "Oh, if only...if only I was a bass drum!"
That has to be rated as one of the weirder things anyone's ever said to me. But after a little thought—and a little explanation—it made sense. She just couldn't think of a single word to express the thankfulness she had in her heart. And she felt that if she were a bass drum she could at least begin to communicate it.

Well, I'm no stranger to that kind of frustration, and, unbelievable as it may seem, I spend a good deal of my time speechless.

All He wants in return for His countless blessings is our love. Often, it just doesn't seem to us to be enough... Sometimes it's a struggle even to give Him that much.

2007 Notes:

I always have liked puns, and I've always been a little silly, so there you have it. In fact, my good friend, Nance, coined the term "Doug Howell humor" at one point. Apparently, she felt that my sense of humor was in a class by itself. (Now that I think of it, though, she would probably say the word "class" shouldn't even enter into the discussion.) Oh, well, I guess that weird sense of humor, or whatever it is, was bound to come out in a few songs now and then.