Music soothes the savage beast....it calms the soul...feeds the heart....makes you do dumb, impulsive things....it seduces....it causes teenagers to roll the windows down and pump the volume up when you're in traffic together; thus drowning out the sports talk show you're listening to; tempting you to get out and throttle the pimply half man behind you in a car that was bought for him by his parents who have more money in their couch cushions then you make in your whole check for the month.
Wow, was I ranting? I can never tell.
Let's get this train back on the right track. The point is that music can bring you where you want to be, take you back where you once were, and let you remember who you once were. It can make you happy, sad, or nostalgic. Such is the power lyrics and rhythms. This is a double First 5 Friday as we look, just from the list I had as a pimply half man in an '84 Chevy Silverado circa 1988-89 and what they have changed to as a supersized version of that teenage Lane.
First 5 Most Meaningful Songs Pre-1990
5. The Final Countdown-Starship. I was big into sports....okay, I still am. But, I was in the throes of an 0-10 senior season in football, a 3-22 season in basketball, and a disappointing semi finals loss in district in tennis. All in all, it was a disappointing year for the Lanester. The song reminded me that in a lot of ways, this year was counting down. There would be no more high school...yeah!! As I grow older, wiser (well in the same way Bill Murray got wiser in Groundhog's Day...but simply living), I realize that what everyone was telling me about high school was correct. Enjoy it, because it never comes again. Every loss in football, basketball, and tennis, was still enjoyable.
4. The Promise-When in Rome. Shows the total amount of frustration from my 'wild care free days of pre 20'. Most of my good friends were girls who I would've liked to date. But, as I was still in a gawky faze that somewhat continues to this very day, I took the just friend route. It was safer. I was very much a riskless teenager.
3. Don't Close Your Eyes-Keith Whitley. See above. I really would love to show how weak in the 'dating' world I was. I guess the best way to put it is in this paraphrased quote, "Son, you tried and you failed. The lesson is never try,' from Homer Simpson. In my mind the verse, instead of going 'Don't Close your eyes, let it be me'...it would 'Please Close your eyes!! Pretend it's anyone else but just for once let it be me getting some physical attention!!' Desperation was a condition...it was a way of life.
2. Every Rose Has it Thorn-Poison. My first relationship ended....my second relationship...ended. Together they lasted a grand total of 7 weeks..okay, I'm rounding up. "Instead of making love, we both made our separate ways." Turned out that I wasn't in love. Turned out I was in lust. Gee, what a surprise. Still didn't make it easier, but at least it was something. I guess at the advanced age of 19 I finally figured out that what I knew about love was...I really didn't know anything about love. Some sensei might say, "Admitting ignorance in your life is the first step to true wisdom, Grasshopper." Of course, after he would say that, my nineteen year old half man self would knee him in the overly sensitie area. Knowledge does not help a lonely guy.
Ironically enough, the singer of the song, Bret Michaels, doesn't know a damn thing either about love. Another bit of irony is that Bill and Ted believed in their most Bogus journey that this was the meaning of life...'That every rose has its thorn, every night has its dawn, and every cowboy sings a sad, sad song.'
1. Candle in the Wind-Elton John. The first time I heard that song was Christmas Eve, 1987 around 10:30 in the morning. It was the first song I heard after my Grandmother called me as a 17 year old to their bed room. It seems my Grandfather who had cancer for several months had passed on in their bed. He had just turned 84. There was a line in that song "I would've liked to know you, but I was just a kid...your candle burned out long before, your legend ever did." I only knew my grandfather as a child. When I finally was a young man, he was gone. It was a regret that I will always have.
First 5 Most Meaningful Songs 1990-2010
5. Feeling Good Again-Robert Earl Keen. When my wife and I first dated we were both surprised that our favorite singer was the same...REK...and our favorite song was the above one. If ya listen to it...you can't help but just smile a bit. "So, I strolled across ol' Main Street walked down a flight of stairs, stepped into a hall and saw all my friends were there. A neon sign was flashin' welcome come on in....It feels so good feeling good again."
4. Gringo Honeymoon-Robert Earl Keen. At Sneaky Momma's (click if you want to see pictues) and my reception with did a dollar dance to this song. Every time I hear the song I wanna go back to Mexico. "We were drinkin' like, the end was not in sight, and we drank all afternoon. We asked the world to wait, so we could celebrate....A Gringo Honeymoon." That song captured our mood that entire five days.
3. The Dance-Garth Brooks. "And now I'm glad I didn't know, The way it all would end, the way it all would go. Our lives are better left to chance. I could have missed the pain, But I'd have had to miss the dance." In February, 2000, my best friend was diagnosed with non smoker related lung cancer. In late June, he died...and the day after he would've turned 30, we buried him. I'm not sure I could ever explain in words what that moment meant when they played this song during his funeral. I guess some things weren't meant to be explained.
2. Goodnight Moon-Jack Ingram. Both of my kids have fallen asleep to this one. "Goodnight Moon..Good night stars...good night ol' broke down cars..." They both have the book and every time I hear it I think of Addsy and Itty Bitty. Addsy can sing it with me by now...Itty Bitty isn't a huge fan of it...but she allows me to sing it to her...poorly I might add...every so often.
1. When You Say Nothing At All-Keith Whitley. It was the song we chose for our wedding. "You say it best, when you say nothing at all." Even after all that teenage angst I was able to find out what a real, adult relationship was like. Sneaky Momma has been my soul mate from damn near the moment I met her. When she looks at me she speaks volumes...when she smiles at me my soul soars.
I hoped you didn't mind this little First 5 walk down memory lane of where I was and where I'm at now. If you want to hear some of the selections, hit the playlist on the left and enjoy.