Tuesday, March 1, 2011

A Musical Portal

by Lisa Hughey

For me, music isn’t JUST music. The beginning notes of a song can completely transport me to another time and place. The memories of my life are all wrapped up in music and just hearing a song evokes all the emotions of that time.

Pachabel’s Canon reminds me of my wedding. And yes I realize that probably ninety percent of couples use this song in their wedding. I don’t care. I loved it before I got married. I loved it when I got married and I STILL love that song. It’s beautiful.

Band on the Run brings back the summer I spent in a hot, humid gym practicing high school gymnastics (for the record-I sucked. I was afraid of falling down or off of things and hurting myself.) The ceiling fans would twirl halfheartedly pushing around the sweltering air and whoever was in charge was in LOVE with Paul McCartney. I swear to God, that song would play over and over and over for three hours. I canNOT stand it.

Running with the Devil reminds me of driving to my Grandfather’s funeral in a big old boat of a Cadillac and my 18 month old son asked my dad to play Beauty and the Goldfish (Hootie and the Blowfish). When he didn’t have it (of course not), my boys sang the song to my parents and I laughed while I cried.

When my daughter was five, she and her pals would come with me on errands after I picked them up from kindergarden. We would belt out Sheryl Crow’s Soak Up the Sun while driving to Costco and then move on to Push by Matchbox 20. Years later, we still turn up the radio and sing loudly but now it’s likely to be Cee Lo Green and Lady Gaga. Singing along with them brings me joy, every single time.

Carlos Santana and Rob Thomas singing Smooth plunges me right back into elementary school age children and rotating summer Happy Hours on Friday nights because we couldn’t afford to get a babysitter and go out to eat. Instead the kids swam and the parents drank margaritas and danced on the grass.

And Teena Marie’s (RIP) Lovergirl ports me right back to college and having fun with my girlfriends, shoes off, dancing on chairs and singing into our fists at the top of our lungs. We were young, happy, carefree and life was FUN.

My life is a lot different now (not better or worse, just different), but for four minutes and 26 seconds I remember exactly how I felt back then. And it rocked.


Juliet Blackwell said...

That's one of the amazing things about music, how it can sweep us back to another moment in time. Lovely memories...!

Rachael Herron said...

I love how you capture that -- the way we are swept back in time. I never even liked Dire Straits, but when they come on, I can feel my first "real" kiss. So true.

L.G.C. Smith said...

I recently had a revision of a song memory where a new experience has overtaken the old. "Benny and the Jets" used to put me in my junior high bedroom, listening on a clock radio while reading The Lord of the Rings. (Kind of a mismatch there, but so very seventies.)

Then a couple of weeks ago, the Leezlet got some pretty spiffy little silver boots for one of her Barbies, and I started singing "Benny...". The Leezlet loved it, so I found it on YouTube and played it for her, and we've been singing it ever since. Now I've got a music wormhole that jumped almost forty years in time.