Friday, December 29, 2006
Ever have song déjà vu?
I almost always have to listen to a song more than once to like it. And it's rare that I feel moved by a song the first time I hear it. There is so much to take in -the rhythm, the words, the meaning. It's hard to get it all on the first time. But then there are those songs that you know you have not heard before, you know that they hold no personal meaning to you, they do not connect to your eighth grade dance, or the first time you drove a car, to college, to a particular person, or to a particular location. But yet it seems they should. They stir you, something deep in you. You feel a wistful sense of longing -melancholy yet incredibly sweet. Tell me you know what I'm talking about? The first song I remember feeling this way about is "Lonely Ol' Night" by John (who at some point decided to drop the Cougar) Mellencamp. I didn't think it was the best song I had ever heard. It didn't make me run out and buy all things Mellencamp. (Although I think he is pretty cool, for the record.) It held no specific meaning to me -I was 19, what did I know about loneliness? Yet it stopped me in my tracks every time I heard it. I was with a man who pretended to love me, but didn't, really, and he said..."this song obviously holds memories for you, it makes you think of someone else." I was shocked. I said..."no, I just like it." But he didn't believe me, he said he could tell by the look on my face. (That was my first clue that he was overly dramatic.) I couldn't convince him that it really meant nothing. And then I realized that it did mean something, although what, I can't really say. Like I said, I was 19, what did I know? The next song that held this power was also by John Mellencamp. Go figure. It was "Ain't Even Done with the Night." Then, Bob Seger and "Night Moves." And on and on, mostly old songs -some Credence, some Clapton, some Waylon. The only recent songs I can say that have had the same effect are Floating Men songs. Oh, and one Ryan Adams song. Maybe a Black Crowes song. Tonight I am listening to one of those songs over and over and over again. I must be on the 20th repetition of it by now -I am sure that Kevin is quite sick of it. It's "Into the Mystic' -Van Morrison. I hate to admit that the first time I really noticed this song was on American Pie, Part Whatever When Michelle Finally Marries That Guy With The Goofy Dad. Sure, I know Van Morrison. Who doesn't know 'Brown-Eyed Girl"? (Especially brown-eyed girls like me...) "Moondance"? Yeah, I know it. But somehow "Into the Mystic" had slipped through the cracks for me until I saw them dance to it on that silly move. (My sincere apologies, Van.) I had to buy it. And each and every time I hear it, I listen to it over and over and over again. I'm not even sure what it's about.....old souls, soul mates, happily ever after, dreamy love, contentment? All I know is that when I hear the opening strums....I feel very, very, very happy. I want someone to want to rock my gypsy soul.... Anyway, I hope that if it didn't happen for you in '06, I hope that in '07 you hear songs that move you for no apparent reason. And I hope you listen to them over and over again. :)