The week’s halfway mark feels better than the day that came before, or the night preceding it. I’m searching through my thoughts, my feelings, and my mental files of strategies and coping skills to come up with a way to bottle up the way days like today feel so that on the ones that feel harder, rougher, and prickly can be doused with some of these good feelings in hopes that it will make those times just a little bit easier. I’m not sure that’s possible though, to bottle up joy. I’m sure I could make a fortune if I figured out how though. In lieu of said bottle of joys, I’m hoping that we can remind each other of days like today (and nights like last night), acknowledging that they exist and can be found again. Or maybe, just maybe, we can conjure them up ourselves. When we work at it we usually find our way right back to this.
Together we know the paths to take to connect. They are usually easy to navigate through, often found without any effort at all. But on the darker days and nights when all the breadcrumbs left have blown away, or been eaten up by stress and worry, it’s then that we need to clasp hands with each other and find our way through. Only together can we find our way then. We’ve spent far too many years trying to make it through alone, even when other people were at our side. Or maybe that’s just how I see my past. I can’t speak for anyone but myself after all. But now I know that I don’t have to make it through alone, even though sometimes I forget that. We have each other now. I hope we have each other forever. I believe that we do.
There’s no real theme to today’s Top 5 Music Obsessions. The mix of tracks started out with a Van Morrison song that came my way this morning and felt immediately like “one of our songs”. After that, the rest just fell in place as music often does. Some are all-time favorites of mine, and one is a new-to-me-today tune. And then the one that starts it off, a song that isn’t new, but is definitely now a favorite; a new addition to the soundtrack of us that keeps growing.
I feel grateful for how today feels. I feel grateful to have us.
Top 5 Music Obsessions – Wednesday, August 15, 2018
1. “I’ll Be Your Lover, Too” by Van Morrison
from the album, His Band and the Street Choir (1970)
“You’ll be my queen.
I’ll be your king.
And I’ll be your lover, too.
Yes, I will.”
At first, these lyrics reminded me of Bowie’s “Heroes”. But as the song unfolds I see that this is more hopeful than Bowie’s. This is a forever kind of love song, not a “just for one day” kind. Though I’d argue that “Heroes” is a love song (or maybe I’ve just made it one to me), this is the kind of real love song that fits into the neverending playlist that goes along with our neverending love.
2. “Tangled Up In Blue” (Take 3, Remake 2) by Bob Dylan
from the album, The Bootleg Series Volumes 1-3 (Rare and Unreleased) 1961-1991
“But me, I’m still on the road,
headin’ for another joint.
We always did feel the same,
we just saw it from a different point of view –
tangled up in blue.”
My all-time favorite Dylan song. This one I’ve listened to so many times, often closing my eyes and thinking of what it all means. The story, the love, the loss, the way these two people seem to keep coming back into each other’s lives, over and over again. I like to think of “Blue” as the woman’s name. I like to think that she exists within the story in Leonard Cohen’s song, “Famous Blue Raincoat” (my all-time favorite Cohen song and my all-time favorite song). That “Jane” is “Blue” (maybe Blue is Jane’s nickname).
I wrote about Jane/Blue once in a journal, and later put an excerpt of it in a post. Here is part of it:
I would love to pen a story about Jane. Perhaps she met up with Bob on the road, or in the topless bar; perhaps he wore a raincoat and gave her a rose before he left her that rainy morning. The rose, she pressed it between the pages of a well-worn copy of Kerouac’s On the Road, the one she tucked in her tattered patchwork bag, the one she took with her everywhere. It has a hole at the bottom, a seam that tore open on a bus ride up the coast, a hole that she patched up with crimson thread.
Maybe one day I’ll write a short story about her. Expand on all the thoughts I’ve penned, or thought up, through the years of listening to “Tangled Up In Blue”.
3. “Twisterella” by Ride
from the album, Going Blank Again (1992)
“Feel the weight letting go.
Feel more lightness than you’ve ever known.
You can’t see when light’s so strong.
You can’t see when light is gone.”
Ride is still a new discovery to me. Somehow I missed them the first time around in the 90’s. I mean, I heard a few songs, now and again, but I never dug in and really listened until the last year, or so. Currently, “Twisterella” is the track of theirs that I can’t seem to get enough of.
I like the idea in the lyrics that there is a weight to letting go, but after, when that weight is gone, there is a lightness that is brand new. I think that letting go is so hard. Especially if the things you are trying to let go of have been with you for years and years. And, especially if the things you are trying to let go of are built on fear and insecurity. I guess the best anyone can do is keep trying, because that lightness is something that would be wonderful to feel.
4. “In Between Days” by The Cure
from the album, The Head On the Door (1985)
“And I know I was wrong,
when I said it was true,
that it couldn’t be me,
and be her in between,
Quite possibly my favorite Cure song, or at least one of my Top 5. This one, and the track “Lovecats” were always part of mixtapes I made back in the late 80’s/early 90’s. It became a joke of sorts after a while. Friends and lovers who knew me well would joke that every mix I ever made had to have one of those two Cure songs, or it wasn’t mine at all.
At the time, I never thought about it. It was never intentional. They were just songs that I adored at the time, and that always seemed to fit in pretty much any and every mix I thought up.
A dystopian, speculative fiction story I’ve been working on for a few years I gave the working title “In Between Days”. It was playing when I first started to develop the story in my head and stuck.
5. “Satellite of Love” by Lou Reed
from the album, Transformer (1972)
“Satellite’s gone up to the skies.
Things like that drive me out of my mind.
I watched it for a little while.
I like to watch things on TV.”
I love the “bom-bom-bom’s”. I can remember driving around with all three of my kids in the car and my oldest turning it up when it came on a mix that either she or I made, and all of us singing-a-long to the “bom-bom-bom’s” together. One of those memory-moments with music attached that always comes back when I hear this track. It always makes me smile.
Top 5 Music Obsessions – Week of August 13, 2018