“Set Fire to the Rain” is a song title that oozes panache, angst and yes, poetry.
So unlike an artist of Adele’s caliber to leave out the lyrics of this and other gems on “Adele21”. Plenty of pleasant pix in the CD jacket but one has to troll the web for the words to her songs. Or just listen intently, as I’ve been doing lately.
Even Adele’s official web site has no lyrics tab. And that’s a shame because her words are powerful, thought-provoking and worth remembering. No doubt, they’ll be included there eventually as her reputation continues to expand and anchor her in the global music scene.
So, what’s to like about the lyrics? They’re somewhat repetitive and uncomplicated. But then you have the imagery, the apostrophe to a lover, the hurt, all-knowing and real.
“I set fire to the rain,” she sings, wails, intimating strength and desperation in the same six syllables.
Her voice ravages the words, like water gushing over stone pebbles in a brook.
There are moments in time when you discover a singer/songwriter and true artist, and become a student of the work, and can barely remember not knowing the music before. So it was when I discovered Cat Stevens, Joni Mitchell, Janis Ian, Lui Collins, Gordon Lightfoot. And so many years later, feeling dated not at all, since music is timeless, I have joined the rest of the planet in discovering Adele. She is transforming my feelings about music, making the deeply personal universal.
The words and notes are memorable, so worth anchoring in that old medium, print. Maybe next time around, Adele?