And When I Die by Blood Sweat and Tears

What do you think?

According to The Music Afficionado, “And When I Die” was written by Laura Nyro at the age of 16 and released on her debut album in January 1967. When interviewed in 1989 about why she decided to write a song about the eternal cycle of life at such a young age, she said: “I think that teenagers are in touch with a very primal truth in life. Sometimes someone will say you were so young to write a song like that, yet I think that there is a folk wisdom in the song that a lot of teenagers have.

Lyrics

I’m not scared of dying 
and I don’t really care
If it’s peace you find in dying, 
well then let the time be near
If it’s peace you find in dying, 
and the dying time is here, 
Just bundle up my coffin cause 
it’s cold way down there,
I hear that’s it’s cold way down there,
yeah, crazy cold way down there
And when I die and when I’m gone, 
There’ll be one child born 
in this world to carry on, to carry on
My troubles are many, they’re as deep as a well
I can swear there ain’t no heaven but I pray there ain’t no hell
Swear there ain’t no heaven and I pray there ain’t no hell, 
But I’ll never know by living, only my dying will tell.
 
 
 
Yes only my dying will tell, yeah, only my dying will tell
And when I die and when I’m gone, 
There’ll be one child born in this world to carry on, to carry on
Give me my freedom for as long as I be
All I ask of living is to have no chains on me 
All I ask of living is to have no chains on me, 
And all I ask of dying is to go naturally, only want to go naturally (here I go, hey hey, here comes the devil, right behind me, here he comes)
 
Don’t want to go by the devil, don’t want to go by the demon, 
Don’t want to go by Satan, don’t want to die uneasy,
Just let me go naturally
And when I die and when I’m dead, dead and and gone, 
There’ll be one child born, in a world to carry on, to carry on, yeah.
 
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Songwriters: Laura Nyro

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