Wednesday, 16 November 2011

The Songs My Son Loved

The Songs My Son loved was part of BBC Radio 2's Remembrance Week programming. Each show involved Jeremy Vine visiting the mother of a fallen soldier. The later shows are still available until Friday via the IPlayer, and if you have the chance to listen to any of them, I would highly recommend it.

The shows revisit the soldiers' life through the music they listened to, around which their mothers share memories of the life of the son they lost, and also the experience of their death.

I found the shows both moving and uplifting. Rather than being overly mawkish, or operating on the level of platitudes, each show seemed to convey something of the essence of the solider that had died.

The musical element gave the opportunity to discuss the positive aspects of each individual and why the songs meant something to them. They provided the background to allow each mother to provide some real colour to the person their son was.

It created an environment where there was an honesty around discussing death, despite the tragic fact these boys had died so young, and in a way which was not detached from the lives they had lead, and the people they were.

It left me inspired by the bravery of the soldiers, and the wonderful decency of the parents they left behind.

Thanks to all involved for this enlightened and positive piece of remembrance programming.

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