Life’s Lessons from the Timeless Lyrics of Songwriter Gordon Lightfoot in Ten Quotes

At the age of 78, Canadian singer-songwriter Gordon Lightfoot has another year touring ahead him, his fans always eager to hear the marriage of lyrics and music.  Lightfoot’s timeless music have inspired countless artists to cover his songs, amongst them are Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Neil Young, Bob Dylan, Barbra Streisand, Johnny Mathis, Harry Belafonte, Sarah McLachlan, Eric Clapton, John Mellencamp, Roger Whittaker, Peter, Paul and Mary, Glen Campbell, The Irish Rovers, Nico and Olivia Newton-John.  Nobel laureate Bob Dylan called Lightfoot one of his favorite songwriters; and is quoted to have said that hearing one his songs made him wish “it would last forever”.

Behind all the awards, tributes and honors, which are far too numerous to mention, is a body of work that reflects the wisdom and beauty of determination.  Lightfoot is an artist that never stands still.  His biography reveals an individual always on the move.  Both his personal and physical setbacks have never set back his resolve to perform and create.  Lightfoot’s legend can be heard and seen through his songs, concerts, interviews and other appearances over the last five decades. Gordon Lightfoot’s remains an enduring troubadour, and these ten quotes provide a glimpse into this artist’s inspiration.


“Be calm in the face of all common disgraces.” – Gordon Lightfoot

“Everything is trust, all the rest is dust.” – Gordon Lightfoot

“Words are for explaining the mistakes we might have made; names are for calling when there is nothing left to say.” – Gordon Lightfoot

“The strength of his will was the tool of his trade.” – Gordon Lightfoot

“Sometimes a broken dream will make you sad or make you mean. Sometimes things ain’t bad as they seem.” – Gordon Lightfoot

“Sometimes I think it’s a shame, when I get feeling better when I’m feeling no pain.” – Gordon Lightfoot

“Whitecaps in profusion all around me, but somehow in your eyes I found the strength to sail upon that raging sea.” – Gordon Lightfoot

“Will you gather daydreams or will you gather wealth? How can you find your fortune when you cannot find yourself?” – Gordon Lightfoot

“To wear the crown of peace, you must wear the crown of thorns.” – Gordon Lightfoot

“If you plan to face tomorrow, do it soon.” – Gordon Lightfoot

Author: Phil Zavackis


Phil Zavackis is a freelance writer living in Toronto. He has recently finished a screenplay titled ‘105 Degrees & Rising’, which is about the Fall of Saigon in 1975.



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