@DavidArchie’s GBA: I love you like a love song, baby

Source: Tumblr/peacelovedavid

This is ridiculous. I can’t get God Bless America out of my head. It’s there at night when I go to sleep and again in the morning when I wake up. Not just any GBA, but David Archuleta’s live version from Arizona. It’s like the red, white and blue earworm from … heck.

I can’t stop replaying it on my iPod either, believe me I’ve tried. I take a break for some TOSOD, some M&S, some Adele, some Pastores, but then I need to hear it again. And again.

Why on earth do I even have an American patriotic song on my iPod??? Makes no sense. I love my U.S. pals to bits but I do not yearn to change my citizenship. I don’t even listen to Canadian patriotic songs — I don’t think we actually have any. It’s just not our thing. (Maybe just one.)

But that’s just it, the way David sings GBA, it doesn’t sound like a patriotic song to me at all. It sounds like a love song. A poignant, intoxicating serenade of love to his home sweet home: “stand beside her and guide her through the night with a light from above.”

When I googled the exact lyrics, two things surprised me. First of all, that it was written by the legendary Irving Berlin (“Blue Skies,” “What’ll I Do?” “Cheek to Cheek,” “White Christmas” etc.) and, secondly, that there are only two verses:

God bless America,
Land that I love,
Stand beside her and guide her
Thru the night with a light from above;

From the mountains, to the prairies,
To the oceans white with foam,
God bless America,
My home, sweet home.
God bless America,
My home, sweet home.

That’s it. That’s all there is. But I could swear, when David sings it, there’s so much more to the song. I get swept up in the soulful swells and runs and the way he builds to the key-change crescendo then softens down to a tender finish. He repeats the verses, but each time takes you on a whole new ride. And that ending. Lethal. The sweet longing in his “hoooome… sweeeet… hoooome” about breaks my heart.

It’s a love song … that’s why it’s on my iPod … that’s my story, Mr. Border Patrol Officer, and I’m sticking to it.

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29 Responses to @DavidArchie’s GBA: I love you like a love song, baby

  1. heartsong says:

    Love your post and LOVE David’s GBA. 🙂 Just an FYI, the lyrics your have posted are actually the chorus. This is the verse:
    “While the storm clouds gather far across the sea,
    Let us swear allegiance to a land that’s free,
    Let us all be grateful for a land so fair,
    As we raise our voices in a solemn prayer. ”
    Most people are not even aware that there is a verse because it’s rarely sung.

    • TOfan says:

      thanks, heartsong, apparently Berlin added that “intro” in 1938 (20 years after writing the original) in response to Hitler’s rise (Berlin being a Jewish immigrant from Russia), if wikipedia can be trusted, lol. Really fascinating history to the song!

  2. bleubird19 says:

    S’ok, TOfan. I happen to really like “Oh Canada” and have since I was a child. Don’t know all the words, but sing along anyway. Would be nice if David could sing it one day, but don’t suppose they’d ask him since he’s American. However, I believe a few Canadians have sung “The Star Spangled Banner” (Celine Dion?). You go right ahead and enjoy that “God Bless America” by David. We Americans are willing to share 😉

    • abanana77 says:

      He just needs to sing at a sporting event that has a Canadian team too! If only Anaheim had been playing Vancouver in the NHL playoffs last year! *am still hoping to hear that one day*

  3. abanana77 says:

    Love the post TOfan! I also love David’s version of GBA. Always have, since the first time I heard him sing it at a Tamp Bay Rays game! (also whenever my grandfather is watching baseball and it’s the Jays vs the Rays, I always think of David. Hahahhaha)

    Love the link to Stompin Tom! Hahaha when I clicked on it I thought it was gonna be the Hockey Night in Canada theme song. lol close enough! 😛 If David ever sang The Hockey Song, I would die a million deaths. Seriously, imagine it right now. Hahahahaha

  4. refnaf says:

    Awesome post TOfan….. David does make this song alove song. This rendition is so beautiful.
    I am with abanana>>> want David to sing the anthems at a hockey game…. really not a far fetched idea **hopes** and The Hockey Song!!!! love it>> The season starts soon!!!

    • abanana77 says:

      Yay! I am excited about the season starting 🙂 A fresh start for our teams that might not have done so well last year 😀

  5. betsy says:

    Thanks for nudging me into giving this another look/listen.
    I totally get what you’re saying. <33

  6. canarchaudry says:

    Another great post Tofan:)…I couldn’t agree with you more about David’s version of GBA!! his heartfelt rendition of the song gets us all the time like….yeah!..like a love song and sometimes we tend to forget that it is actually a patriotic song haha…Simply the best GBA rendition I’ve heard so far and I’m sticking to it lol.
    And the good news is…vacation is finally approved, Yeah!!!

  7. tawna21 says:

    Tofan this is a beautiful version of GBA—actually, the best version in history!! I have to agree with it being a love song the way he is singing it. I hadn’t ever thought of our patriotic songs being love songs, but in reality, I guess that’s what they really should be–from us to our nation (whatever nation that may be). And yes, I would love to hear David sing Oh Canada, also. I don’t know the words, but the tune is so pretty. Just imagine him singing it. 🙂

    I love this video because it lets us see David getting a little irritated at his keyboardist for the fiddling around on the intro that he’s doing. I certainly wouldn’t want that look from my boss! haha

    Tawna

    • TOfan says:

      haha, tawna, I noticed that too! lol I wouldn’t be surprised if, after the initial intro, David had planned to do that first verse acappella ‘cuz Mark’s notes seem kinda random there and ya, David gives him a “what the heck are you doing?” look 😆

  8. fenfan says:

    you are right. this is a love song, a heart-wrenching one the way he sings it. i am not american but i love david’s version of gba. i have listened to almost, if not all the youtubes of him singing it. this one is the most beautiful, despite the distraction during the intro. i sing his version in my head quite often! haha. i need help!

  9. ray says:

    tofan ,you just had to do it posting gba,i was all right until i got here now have wet eyes,love ya all

  10. fenfan says:

    tofan, i am from singapore. i have seen david twice – when he came to sing in a mall here and in manila when he performed with david cook. i was unable to go to any of the recent asia concerts – missed kuala lumpur by 2 weeks!

  11. Utahmom says:

    Please, please, please sing The Hockey Song David!! My life would be complete.

  12. djafan says:

    Hi TOfan!

    Growing up singing all these US patriotic songs in choir never choked me up, I do have trouble listening to To Sir With Love without shedding a tear lol. But patriotic…never. Then along comes David Archuleta singing them and making me understand and “feel” these songs. So I absolutely understand what your saying and I love the way you say it. Thanks!

  13. Heidijoy says:

    TOfan! I’ve lived in America all my life and sang in Glee Club etc. I’ve never been as moved by God Bless America as I am when David sings it! He is so sincere in singing with meaning and passion. David is thankful for his heritage and his country for welcoming his Mom/family here in the US. David has this music and meaning in his soul,his bones, his heart,his mind and his blood. It’s enough to give me “goosebumps”, tears and

    • Heidijoy says:

      oops! Has anyone else noticed if you stop in a sentence,you can’t continue typing.

      ….joy. Thank You for the nice tribute.

  14. peppertara says:

    Love David’s GBA……a love song, most definitely! Great post TOfan. Ha, I have his patriotic songs on my little MP3 player (I’m not very high tech) and listen to them along with his Christmas music, pop songs and just about anything else I’ve been able to get my hands on. David has a way of turning just about everything he sings in to a ❤ song in some capacity. I agree, his GBA is soooo…. beautifully sung, doesn't matter where you are from, it's straight from his heart to the listener's.
    Heck, have a feeling David would turn 'Oh Canada' into a love song if he sang it. 🙂

  15. Marylee says:

    TOfan: As many times as I’ve listened to David sing God Bless America…after reading your article..I listened to the video you provided & heard EXACTLY what you heard…a love song. I always knew it was beautiful & heartfelt~no doubt ~it’s the “sweet longing” that makes it a love song to his country. No one comes close to singing it like he does. ❤

  16. TOfan says:

    Stunned and saddened by the news of the death of Steve Jobs … esp. since I’m typing this on an iMac, listening to iTunes and about to recharge my iPod.

    This link isn’t David-related, directly anyway 🙂 … it’s the commencement address delivered by Mr. Jobs to the graduating class of Stanford University in 2005. Words to live by.
    http://news.stanford.edu/news/2005/june15/jobs-061505.html

    • Heidijoy says:

      Thanks for adding the commencement address. Very interesting read. He was so brilliant and his legacy will live on forever.

  17. peppertara says:

    Yes, it was sad to hear the news about Steve Jobs. A brilliant and wise man. His commencement address was inspiring. What an interesting and incredible life experience he had, too bad it ended too soon. His legacy is a remarkable one (as I type on my iBook). R.I.P. Steve.

  18. TOfan says:

    Check out this Ticketmaster interactive Seat Map for David’s Verona, NY, show … almost the whole venue sold out!!! 🙂 🙂 🙂

    http://www.ticketmaster.com/event/0000473B9981AD14?artistid=1229013&majorcatid=10001&minorcatid=1&camefrom=CFC_BUYAT_drivngrevenue

  19. TOfan says:

    New post/thread!

    🙂

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