Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The Soundtrack

Music is a huge part of life.
Among the million or so reasons why I would never last ten seconds in a 'Big Brother' house is the music thing.
No access to music, no singing lyrics, no humming actual tunes even.

Whilst I can't hold a note
(literally-I was the only girl in yr 7 not allowed in the choir-scarred for life)
I defiantly just go on loving music anyway.
What I lack in skill, I make up for in enthusiasm and often volume
(as I slowly put that primary music trauma behind me).

Whilst I never got to be one of Robert Palmer's backing singers on Simply Irresistible or "Love Shack" up with The B52s - there's always youtube, right?!

As with most folk, the bulk of my memories are accompanied by a soundtrack of some description. A once familiar song can bring back vivid images, intense feelings, laughter and often a tear or two.

My childhood memories include my drummer Dad's love of The Beatles and his pencil drumming along to Thin LIzzy while working on house plans at night. I was brought up on the likes of the Pogues and Christy Moore and spent many weekends soaking up Irish music in situ - at Irish pubs.

My best friend's parents woke us up on sleepover mornings with lively renditions of "Da Doo Ron, Ron, Ron" and "Hey Mickey". We held many a backyard concert to the almighty Whispering Jack's cult tracks. Yes, we could 'Take The Pressure Down' like nobody's business. Sadly, the 'Home and Away' theme song also featured heavily in these years - as did the Home and Away hot line. Anyone else prank call that number regularly? Just us, hey.

I wasn't particularly loyal to any one genre as a teenager (or now).

Pearl Jam and Nirvana rocked my world but so did a bit of Hip Hop Hooray with Naughty By Nature and Salt N Pepa!
I can remember a fickle swapping  of my Soundgarden CD for a friend's Snoop Dogg album.
I loved our commercial version of 'trance' and a rolling bass too. Ba ha ha. We were nuthin but hardcore!

The gang and I also mistakenly thought we had discovered the magic that was The Violent Femmes, The Doors, Bob Marley and Jimi Hendrix.
(Obstinately refusing to acknowledge that we were one of many generations to believe this.)

My very first 'grown up' music concert experience was Cypress Hill and Ice Cube. I clearly remember my friend not being allowed to go at the last minute as her Dad had seen a segment on Today Tonight or similar about their explicit lyrics and drug referencing. I don't know what he was smoking - how could Insane In The Brain or I Wanna Get High be anything but lovely melodies?? I thought the boys were very industrious gardeners - always singing about getting that 'weed'.

When I fluked scored my driver's licence 'How Bizarre' was constantly pumping out of my stock standard 1978 fabulous brown Ford Escort speakers. The radio stations were flogging it and I sang along, windows down, thinking how bizarre it was that I was licenced - as I am was a shocking driver.

Any track from the Dirty Dancing soundtrack (as well as any quote) is ingrained in my subconscious and is easily applied to a myriad of scenarios. You'd be surprised how many occasions call for a bit of "I carried a watermelon" or "nobody puts Baby in a corner".
I haven't arrived at a final verdict as to whether the Black Eyed Peas have paid homage to an era defining tune or are guilty of butchering the damn thing with The Time (Dirty Bit) .

When I would go home to Ireland - it was important to have your song.
You know, a bit of Danny Boy or Limerick, You're A Lady (um, no she certainly is not  - for the record. I'm allowed to dispute this as it's my birthplace. No Irish raging, please.)
Fact - I don't have a song - because I can't sing.
You see, after the pub closes, the music is turned off, the doors locked and the real music begins. A capella and amateur. I would strategically go to the bar or toilet every time the invisible 'singing stick' got anywhere close to me and then manoeuvre my way into a position as far away from the 'sing spot' as possible. Not bad logistics for a girl who had a whole town's worth of 'shouts' impairing her judgement.

In my heyday, Blink 182s' All The Small Things
"Say it ain't soooo, I will not gooooo. Turn the lights out, carry me home...Na na na..."
could well have been written about my reluctance to call it a night - ever.
Enough said. Tequila may well be an appropriate link to this time too.

Planet Funk accompanied my hair, make up and 'I have no clothes freak out' routine in the lead up to a big night out. One More Time transports me back to the red velvet curtains of a particular haunt and I See You Baby never fails to make me grin stupidly at the 'good old days'!

When Hubby and I were young and stupid (just prior to becoming old and stupid, I believe) our Saturday or Sunday morning catch cry was too often Spiderbait's "Whoa, Black Betty, bambalam".

Our wedding song was Jack Johnson's "Better Together" and I still listen to it regularly.
I also stand by the lyrics (read  - Hubby - come the hell home!!)

There is no combination of words I could put on the postcard
And no song that I could sing, but I can try because this is your heart and this is
Our dreams and they are made out of real things
Like a shoebox of photographs with sepia-toned loving
Love is the answer at least for most of the questions in my heart, like
Why are we here? And where do we go? And how come it's so hard?
It's not always easy and sometimes life can be deceiving
I'll tell you one thing, it's so much better when we're together

Mmm, so much better when we're together
Yeh, we'll look at the stars when we're together
Well it's so much better when we're together
Yeh, it's so much better when we're together...

A friend sang a beautiful rendition of Bernard Fannings "Watch Over Me" during our wedding ceremony.

When trouble fills my world
You bring me peace
You calm me down
You're my relief
When walls come crashing down around my feet
You light my way
You're my release

So say you'll watch over me
When I'm in too deep
Tell me you'll always be
There to pull me free

When the sun is beating down upon my brow
You are my shade
You cool me down
Every time i tried to turn away
You brought me 'round
Your humble way

So say you'll watch over me
When I'm in too deep
Tell me you'll always be
There to pull me free
There to rescue me

Both songs still make me bawl like a baby.

When I was pregnant nearly every worship song had me in tears, but in particular the beautiful 'Shout To The Lord'. I would rub my growing belly, sing out of tune and let the tears roll.

In the early days and nights with Magoo (I couldn't really tell the difference) Hubby and I would wander around this place singing Pink's "This used to be a fun house..."
Inspiring words of comfort for one another, really.

We also sang a lot of the Ting Ting's "That's Not My Name" when one of my aunties sent our beautiful, newborn Magoo a card bearing a completely different name to the one we had painstakingly chosen!

Powderfinger's recent (and final) gig was hands down one of the best live performances I've been to. Whether it was their actual show or the 'date night' atmosphere that made "These Days" so blissful, I can't be certain though.

My days are now filled with nursery rhymes and silly, impromptu songs to entertain or cajole a toddler into compliance. The Wiggles dominate our airwaves and 'The Muppets' are regularly stuck in my head. Rock A Bye Your Bear must be one of the cutest little songs to sing over and over and over - and over some more.

When I'm cross with Hubby I tend to favour a bit of Beyonce's "If I Were A Boy' or 'Single Ladies'. I figure 3:28 mins of pretending to be a single lady in the confines of my own car is preferable to stabbing a certain someone in the eye with a fork.

I love to run to anything with a kicking beat and great tempo. My itunes playlist reads like that of a teenage girl.  Current i pod favourites include "Happiness", "Put your Hands Up For Detroit", The Chemical Brothers, The Lady Herself - Gaga, Daft Punk, my girl Pink, The Presets and approximately twelve more hours of the tunes all the kids are loving.

Hubby is currently in raptures over Duck Sauce's "Barbara Streisand".
(I know, don't tell him he's long out of high school, plus  - Barbara Streisand??
His taste is a worry. Present wife excepted!
His 'celebrity free shot' is Patricia Arquette for goodness sake. 
I'd almost feel bad being with Robbie Williams or Simon Baker knowing that he only gets the 'Medium Mum').

On that note, I'd want Robbie Williams present at my funeral too.
In the form of 'Angels' or 'Nan's Song' (cue more tears)  - or both if you have the time folks.

Lately I've been feeling a bit too Alanis Morissette for my liking.

I'm becoming less You Learn and more of U2's Beautiful Day as this week goes on, though.
Must be 'cause my Lady Limerick is calling me.

What's currently playing on the soundtrack of your life?
Or do you have a favourite track so far?

Shar :-)

The disclaimer : I take no responsibility for offence caused by any of the links featured in this post. I do apologise for any offence caused by my taste in music though.


MaidInAustralia said...

Beautiful wedding song lyrics ... music is amazing, there are songs that make me laugh, smile and cry like a baby also!

Corinne – Daze of My Life said...

I adore music. My dad is a jazz musician and there was a time where I considered music as a career option too.

These days, unfortunately, my music collection remains in 2006 (when my first daughter was born).

I'm going to a concert in two weeks (Pulp) and I can't wait! I told my husband it's my last hurray before I slide into the life as a dull housewife to three kids.

The Beatles and The Doors are high up on my list of faves too. x