April is here. April already. March seemed like a year in one month, but at the same time, it seemed to speed by in a blur. I wake up sometimes thinking this is all over. In those first few moments of eyes opening, the sun barely showing itself through the window, my body stretching, my breathing deep, I think everything is normal – whatever normal ever was. It doesn’t take long for reality to hit. Reality has really good aim and hits really hard. Sometimes reality knocks the wind right out of me.
I think about grief. How grief acts like this. You wake up in the morning and those first thoughts are that the person you’ve lost is not lost at all. And then reality takes aim and hits. Hard. And it’s almost like going through the loss all over again.
Some mornings its hard to not pull the blankets over my head and go back to sleep. Some mornings it’s hard not to just lay there and cry. Some mornings it’s hard to get up at all. But, it’s still morning. It’s a new day. I’m healthy still. I have my kids and my boyfriend here with me. I have a job still. I have books and music and things to watch. I have things to write and workouts to do. I have things to cook and bake. I have a whole life to live in this new reality, so I have to hit reality right back. Harder.
I get up and try a little harder. I get up and try to remember to breathe. To sweat. To give myself grace. To give those stuck inside with me grace. And to find joy in each day. It’s there. Joy is. It may be hard to find some days, but it’s there. Some days it may take a long time to find it, but it’s worth the effort. And if you can’t find joy, turn some music on. Turn it up loud. Let it take you somewhere else, even if just temporarily. Dance if you can. Sway if you can. Sing-a-long if you can.
We are all in this together, even if we are all far apart and feel alone. This is hard. It is. Today it feels really hard. So I’m turning up Today’s Top 5 Music Obsessions loud and I’m letting it wash over me. I’m letting it be the first joy I find today.
Top 5 Music Obsessions – April 1, 2020
1. “You Can’t Talk Trust” by Zac Clark
from the album, I Am A Guest (2015)
“She comes to me and says,
“son, stop singin’ such sad, sad songs.”
She shakes me from my sleep,
where I kept my mind on loss,
and I lost my mind,
stared at what I sought till I’d forgotten how to find.
I prayed my poetry’d be proof,
my truth, I thought,
would somehow rhyme.
But I learned you can’t talk trust,
trust just takes time.”
Ben Lee (and his daughter, Goldie) did this Quarantine Talent Show on Instagram Live yesterday and one of their “guests” was Zac Clark, who played this song on the piano and sang it. I’d never heard him, or the song before. It really hit me in all the feeling bits and I had to go and find it. I’ve been listening to it ever since. It is definitely a music obsession song right now.
2. “Hideous Towns” by The Sundays
from the album, Reading, Writing, And Arithmetic (1990)
“And sticks and stones may break my bones,
but words will just finish me off,
yeah near enough.”
I’ve always loved The Sundays, and have loved the album Reading, Writing, And Arithmetic since I first bought it – on cassette – in 1990. As the years have gone by, and especially in the last year or so, I’ve come to love the band, Harriet Wheeler’s voice and songwriting, and this album so much more. I can’t seem to get enough of it. I keep re-discovering songs on it and finding myself obsessed with them. Right now it’s this track, the fifth on the album.
3. “Ti Ha mor” by Gwenno
from the album, Le Kov (2018)
“Marghek an Gwyns ow nija.
War an howlsedhes efan.
Tir ha mor, tir ha mor.“
A new discovery courtesy of Spotify’s Discovery Playlist (I find so many new music obsession gems from these weekly playlists).
Here is the English translation to the lyrics above:
“The rider of the winds is dancing,
across the sunrise.
Land and sea,
land and sea.”
4. “All Flowers In Time Bend Towards The Sun” by Mind Cinema
from the Single (2018)
“All flowers in time bend towards the sun.
I know you say that there’s no-one for you,
but here is one.”
A lovely cover of a song that I love with so much of my music-obsessed heart (the original a duet by the amazing voices of Jeff Buckley and Elizabeth Fraser). This is another song I found thanks to the Spotify Discover Playlist. Yay!
5. “A Shot In The Arm” by Wilco
from the album, Summerteeth (1999)
“The ashtray says,
you were up all night.”
One of my favorite Wilco songs, off of my favorite Wilco album. I think I’ll have a listen to the album in its entirety today.
Top 5 Music Obsessions – April 2020