My iPod accidentally shifted to “Shuffle” as I transferred it to the docking station in our kitchen. In between my current musical obsessions, 3-minute snapshots crept in.
* * *
Our Lady Peace, crooning the words I haven’t sought in years. The songs that got me through the first move (of many, many moves) that I was truly conscious of. “Are you sad, are you holding yourself?” When it stopped being the chance to explore a new place and started to mean that I was leaving something behind. (I still struggle with that dichotomy, but I am starting to think the thrill of adventure is making a come-back.)
The Moulin Rouge cover of Elton John’s “Your Song,” taking me back to the guy who loved me before anyone else did. Gorgeous, funny, with a beautiful, developing tenor voice, softly singing the song just for me in his meticulously-cared-for, fuschia-interiored, hand-me-down car. We keep missing each other, and so often, I’ve had to admit that our friendship isn’t what it was. But hearing those words makes me feel 14 again, singing along to a musical and dreaming of love with my best friend.
People make fun of me for my musical taste a lot. Whether hipster or metal-head, they always know what I should be listening to. Spoiler: You haven’t heard of it.
But even when it’s not my preference for Ke$ha over classical, it’s my tendency to stick a cd on my iPod or in my car and listen to it on repeat, for years at a time. It’s not really my fault – in that way, and in many others, I am my mother’s daughter. I still mentally add the sounds of her Nordic Track anytime I hear “Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes.” I know all the intonations of Harry Chapin’s stories – but only those from an ancient cassette tape, the name of which I never knew. I still think about Randy Travis “Digging up Bones” and giving that ring a fling. And the Rockies will forever be linked to the tears she cried when she found out John Denver died. Thinking about it, sometimes I want to cry too.
A rag tag bunch of misfits, they all have a place in my pocket, hidden in the folds of Florence’s melodic tones and the dancey pop of Gaga – the sultry sounds of Lana del Rey and the auto-tune of Fun! that fill my playlists these days. They are the sounds of my history. They are not popular (Randy Travis is downright uncool) and I don’t pull them out at parties, but a few words in and I can’t help but sing along and remember the sweet, sad, beautiful moments they’ve accompanied through the years.
I will listen to them until my dying day. Come what may.
A few years ago, I wrote much more frequently and freely. I’d like to start getting back into it and I hope you’ll stick around for the occasional emotional post. Promise it won’t overtake 25×25 goals posts and pictures of the pug (as if that were even possible).