A few days ago, a friend mentioned how listening to a certain song could easily take her back to a few decades ago and bring with it some pretty intense emotions. I was quick to agree with the concept that music has some very powerful qualities and the ability to connect us to others and ourselves a bit more. I instantly had a few songs in mind that I could share that impacted me the same way. Hearing certain words can bring emotions, smells, familiar faces and rapid heart beats. It can remind us of pain, exhilaration and hope. I don’t think that musicians can truly understand the way their songs can change our moods, our moments, and our memories. In both good times and bad, events in my past are often linked with a song or artist that will forever be a part of that crisis or celebration for me.
I sat down and started a list – a list which I simply named “Soundtrack of my life”. I wanted to see how many songs came to mind when I recalled an important episode, experience, or season of my life. This was really a fun list to make, and I can’t wait to compile all of my special songs onto a list on spotify so that I can add to it as new ones pop up!
My eyes are closed and as I think about growing up – I am transported back to my childhood home on Geneva Street. The stereo is blasting Lionel Richie. He fills a a huge part of my musical memory bank. His earlier music with the Commodores was introduced to me by my Mom who only listens to one kind of music…LOUD. Bless her, but she is not a quiet lady – ahem, the apple does not fall far from that tree. We would dance around our house jamming out to Lionel Richie, Pat Benatar, Al Jarreau, John Lennon, James Taylor and Michael Jackson. The radio was always turned on immediately in the car, too. As my high school years approached – I was constantly listening to Maria Carey, Janet Jackson and Boys 2 Men . Upon graduation, I had listened to their song “It’s So Hard To Say Goodbye To Yesterday” so many times that my mom would say “Just say goodbye already!!!”. Good times. College days were lived listening to just about every kind of music – new friends brought new music genres and I found out what I preferred and didn’t like at all (sorry – I’m just not a fan of hard rock or rap … shocking, I know). We listened to music when we studied, when we exercised, when we cooked, and when we hung out discussing how we would conquer the world.
Our wedding song still holds such a sweet place in my heart. My husband is a huge Elvis fan, and I have liked his music since childhood as well. Fools Rush In was an easy choice for us and we even have a picture hanging up in our front hallway with some of the words to our special song “Take my hand, take my whole life, too”. Whenever we hear it – we smile.
Another song that will forever be extra special to me is “Not for a Moment – After All” by Meredith Andrews. This song was released around the same time my dad suffered a stroke. My world was turned upside down but when I heard the words to this song, it brought me a deep sensation of hope, love, and comfort from above. To this day, when I hear this song, it brings tears to my eyes.
I am grateful for the impact that music has had on my life. It makes me smile to see how much my own children love their music and how it enhances their own lives. What are some of your favorite songs, and how have they added to your life?