An oratorio about growing up in Liverpool during World War II, and the conflicts in modern life, written by Paul McCartney.

The Liverpool Oratorio is by turns moving, silly, anguished, nostalgic, and occasionally risible (as when a beautiful deep voice demands musically: "Where's my dinner? ... All I've got to say is: Why no dinner?").

Accompanied by a choir of schoolboys singing "Non nobis soli, sed toti mundo nati...", a man tells of his childhood during the 1940s, his growth into manhood, his father's death, his marriage, his career, and the crises facing his family.

The fourth movement, "Father", is an anguished and reproachful lament addressed to his father, who has just passed away. This is followed by a moving elegy:

O Father, you have given
Time to your children
You will look after
Those in your care
Into the future
In ever-growing circles
You will be there.

And your spirit will keep us moving
In the right direction.

There have been many attempts to define the baby boomer generation by its music; Paul McCartney offers a definition in music of English children of World War II. I think it's worth a listen.


  1. War
  2. School
  3. Crypt
  4. Father
  5. Wedding
  6. Work
  7. Crises
  8. Peace
(I'm not planning to node the lyrics -- they are quite extensive, and I think excerpts will do.)

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