Backstories


mefc12-04-III-600The Story Behind the Song
Stay With Me.

In February of 2010 my mother had just received a life changing medical diagnosis. I decided then and there that life was moving way too fast. Mom lived about 2.5 hours away, and so, with my husband’s blessing, I cleared my schedule and went to spend a full month with my mother. It was a time of laughter, and it was a time of tears. It was a precious time together that I will always cherish. One day, as we were clearing out decades of her life I found one of her old crochet books. She’d had it for well over 50 years. As children and even after we became adults, mom (like many women of her generation) did quite a bit of crocheting and needlework.


IMG_1914-600Well … in the back of one of her crochet books I noticed some shorthand. She had probably penned the shorthand sometime back in the late or early 60s.

As my eyes scanned the letters I said “Mom these words sound like they could be a song”. Do you remember what you were doing when you wrote down the shorthand? My mom said “no honey I don’t remember”…. But through the wonder of Google and some search engine help, those few words led to me find a (now obscure) song that sounded like it “could be” what I was reading in my mother’s book, and what my dear mother wrote decades before. You can see the shorthand on the cover of the CD. I tried to imagine a young mother of 8 with her hands so full and LORD knows if her own Heart was empty or full … but she took the time to write down those words. It occurred to me that the song meant enough to her that she wrote it down somewhere where she wouldn’t lose it … in the back of her beloved hardcover (hardcover books were rare in our home then) crochet book. That song obviously moved her and it had the same effect on me. Anyway . . . I jumped over to You Tube, and armed with what I thought was the Title of the Song (or poem, for at this point I didn’t know which it was) I found a song called Stay with me.

The song was being performed by someone I had never heard of, and he was obviously singing to a track he had scraped the vocals off of and overdubbed with his own vocal. But down in the description it Said “From the Movie THE CARDINAL”. It gets better: (well at least to me) When my mother heard the man singing it on YouTube she said that Frank Sinatra had sung that song many years ago. But the Frank Sinatra I knew didn’t sing songs like this. This song was a prayer, a pleading with God not to leave him for he had sinned. On that day, I couldn’t find a track of Sinatra singing it anywhere. It took a few days, but we finally located Sinatra doing the song. For you Sinatra fans, that would be Sinatra ’65 of if you have the reprise collection, it’s on the Reprise Collector’s edition album Disk 7. And so I was right … the song was written in 1963 and recorded shortly thereafter. I would have probably been between 10 and 12 years old (or so).

WOW. I thought. I have to sing that song.And so …. my journey began to find that obscure music. Of course I rented the movie The cardinal and “lo and behold” (or as my dear friend Monini says “long and behold”, there it was …. The beautiful song I had heard. There were no words just the melody, but a beeeea-uuu- tiful melody.

For you Sinatra fans, that would be Sinatra ’65 of if you have the reprise collection, it’s on the Reprise Collector’s edition album Disk 7. And so I was right … the song was written in 1963 and recorded shortly thereafter. I would have probably been between 10 and 12 years old (or so).

Fast forward to our cruise and Gordon Mote. Well you all know the story. Gordon is now my accompanist and my producer (Psalm 37:4) and he didn’t need any sheet music. He just heard it and played it. Amazing gifts from God are embodied in that Gordon Mote. And so…here is my vocal of Stay With Me. This is a very very very special song to me, because it evokes all kinds of emotion, along with memories of my early years at home with my parents. It recalls to mind my earthly Father, Jack Fish, and his beautiful tenor voice. He, sadly, died with his music in him. But I will dedicate this song to the memory of my dear father with whom I unfortunately did not have the kind of relationship I longed for here on earth but one day, I trust will enjoy in Heaven. Stay with me, I believe, is the title cut from the Album and I hope it touches others the way it touched me. We all (at some point or points of our lives) need repentance and prayer. Hope you enjoy it. God makes all things beautiful in His Time . . . He is never late and all things come full circle don’t they?

Stay with me, is the title cut from the Album and I hope it touches others the way it touched me. We all (at some point or points of our lives) need repentance and prayer. Hope you enjoy it. God makes all things beautiful in His Time . . . He is never late and all things come full circle don’t they?

Leave a Reply