Lyrics To Through The Years By Kenny Rogers latest 2023

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Listen to the Children While They Play

I was 13 in 1968 when Henson Cargill, a relatively unknown name in country music, topped the country charts with the Jack Moran and Glenn Tubb-penned classic, “Skip a Rope.”

I was just getting into music in a new way. And the music changed significantly. Pop music was becoming more and more politically and socially conscious. Within a few years, we had gone from “I Want to Hold Your Hand” to “Sargeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” and “All Along the Watchtower”.

Country music was also changing. In another year, Kenny Rogers hit it big with “Ruby, Don’t Take Your Love to Town”, inspired by Mel Tillis Vietnam. On all fronts in popular music, social commentary was on the rise.

“Skip a Rope” was another early country entry into the “all we need is love” music movement.

At that time, music magazines for teens printed the lyrics to the best songs on the back of the publication. I was beginning to be fascinated with songwriting: who wrote the song, what did the words “”, etc. really mean.

“Skip a Rope” was one of those songs I found the lyrics to. As a child with major family issues, the lyrics were particularly meaningful and poignant to me.

“Skip a Rope” was about everything: family discord, racial discrimination, greed… and I was not far from literally jumping rope on the playground and hearing the kind of mean things that children can say, often just repeating what they heard at home. The song rang “true” to me, and I’m guessing to countless others as well.

Over the years, I often thought of “Skip a Rope” and hummed it to myself. I couldn’t remember who wrote or even recorded the song, until I learned that Henson Cargill died at the age of 66 on March 24, 2007. The news brought back a flood of memories.

jump rope Lyrics

(Words and music by Jack Moran and Glenn Tubb)

Oh, listen to the children as they play,

Ain’t it funny what the kids say,

Skip a rope.

Daddy hates mommy, mommy hates daddy,

Last night you should have heard the fight they had,

I gave my little sister another bad dream,

She woke us all up with a terrible scream.

(CHORUS)

Cheat on your taxes, don’t be silly,

Now what did they say about a golden rule?

No matter the rules, just play to win,

And hate your neighbor for the shadow of his skin.

(CHORUS)

Backstab ’em in the back, that’s the name of the game,

And mom and dad are to blame.

Skip a rope, skip a rope,

Just listen to your kids while they play,

It’s really not very funny, what the children say,

Jump rope, jump rope.

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