Tuesday, June 26, 2012

#60 He Makes Memory Music

Music has a mystical way of making memories spring up in the mind.  Have you ever heard a song and instantly been mentally transported to a previous time in your life?

Please tell me I'm not the only one.

Of course, there are the music world staples which cannot be counted as memory music.  "Mary Had a Little Lamb" might bring most to a Pre-K state of mind, and it could easily be disputed whether it actually reminds us of our Pre-K years or just of the association that the song has with toddlers.  Likewise, "The Wedding March" cannot count as a true memory song because as a society we associate "The Wedding March" with weddings.  The second the lone notes bring in the mighty chords of that familiar tune our minds instantly picture doors opening and the presentation of a huge white gown hiding a nervous bride.

That's association.  We associate toddlers with "Mary Had a Little Lamb" and white brides and weddings with "The Wedding March" because that is what such songs are typically associated with.

Of course, there are always exceptions.

True memory music should be unique to you and your life encounters.  

I'll show you.

My entertainment growing up was always Christian or educational.


Hearing just a few verses from The Donut Man's song, "Jesus Showed us God's Love" instantly sends me back to around five or six-years-old in the doorway of my living room.  I'm instantly getting teary eyed at the verse:

"Jesus showed us God's love, when he carried that awful cross,
Tell me could you say what Jesus said if they did those mean things to you?
He said, "Father, forgive them, they know not what they do,"

I hear, "Oh I wonder wonder, boo ba do oo who? Who wrote the book of love?" and I'm in sixth grade on my Tuesday night trip with my dad home from the Burlington Center Mall where I've just had a 9:00 pm violin lesson.  We've just picked up fries from Checkers and have the radio set to 98.1 WOGL.  We're listening to the oldies and I'm fascinated by all this music of the past.

I need only hear the didgeridoo in the song "Niki Nana" by Yanni and I'm sitting at my family kitchen table for dinner on any weeknight of my teen years.

It's eighth grade and the Backstreet Boys are big.  My friend, Amy, and I fantasize about particular members of the boy band while using their songs to relate with them.  When I hear, "I Want it That Way" or "Tell Me Why" I'm thinking about young love and heartache.

Louie Armstrong's "Blueberry Hill", and Sarah Vaughan singing "All of Me" puts me back to those awkward years in the middle of high school right after the Backstreet Boys phase.  It's the, 'he loves me, he loves me not' time of every girl's life.

Eminem's tunes and Busta Rhymes singing, "Busta, what it is right now," reminds me of when I first started my friendship with my hubby.  He was convinced that he could make me like the music he liked and I tried to for a while.  Yet now, it is a memory of the start of our friendship.

When I hear the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir, any song off their "Be Glad" album, I'm at my job at Ward's Christian Bookstore where my school principal first introduced me to this CD by playing it every single time he worked.

I connected a lot of music to my time spent working at American Eagle Outfitters.  There was selected store music we had to play all day long.  The problem was that if you worked a full day's shift you heard the CD about two and half times.  Feist's "1234" is one of the songs that puts me back on the hardwood floors, standing and chatting, while folding t-shirts.

Michael Jackson shouting out, "So just leave me alone," puts me on the job merchandising for Fossil, Inc.   This was back when I set certain ring tones on my cellphone, and the Fossil office and all my supervisors were given this one.  I still shutter a bit when I hear this song.

I do have a particularly favorite memory song.  When I hear, Coldplay's Viva La Vida start:
"I used to rule the world, 
Seas would rise when I gave the word
Now in the morning I sleep alone,
Sweep the streets I used to own..."

I'm reminded of my first year of marriage.  This was hubby's ringtone for his alarm clock in the morning.  So now, whenever I hear this song I'm instantly sent back to my first year of marriage and how wonderfully perfect it was.

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