Sunday, August 1, 2010

Thoughts On the Music In My Ipod

This morning on my jog through the neighborhood, I listened to the following songs on my ipod: “Highway to Hell” (ACDC); “Get Low” (Flo Rida); “Garden Party” (Rick Nelson); “If You Think You’re Lonely Now” (Bobby Womack); “Tired Of Being Alone” (Al Green); “Take Me To the River” (Al Green); “Jungleland” (Bruce Springsteen); “Night Moves” (Bob Seeger); and “Oh, Boy” (Buddy Holly).
These are some of the things I thought about:
--My daughter and I used to drive through Briones Regional Park when she was in high school.  We would listen to a tape she made, and “Highway to Hell” was on it.  We would turn it up loud.
--Robert and I love “Get Low.”  “Them baggy sweat pants/And the Reeboks with the straps/She turned around and gave that big booty a smack.”  It just makes us laugh.  We like the guys in the background.
--No one except for me likes “If You Think You’re Lonely Now.”  No one.  It gives me chills.  It’s religion.  Except I don’t like the lyrics.  They don’t go with the music, which sounds like religion and sex together.
-- My ex-husband and I had a thing for Jennifer Holliday and went to see her whenever she was in the Bay Area.  Al Green opened for her at the Circle Star once.  “Take Me to the River” is just, well, amazing.
--“Jungleland:” Bryn Mawr College.  Freshman year.  Leslie Whitaker’s room on the third floor of Rhoads North.
--In 1977, I was a sophomore in college.  My father was dying. During spring break, I drove from Philadelphia to Fort Lauderdale with three male friends who were seniors.  (I am glad I got to experience spring break once, but really, once was enough.)  On the trip home, “Night Moves” came on the car radio, and two of my friends high-fived each other.  The air smelled like orange groves.  I have never forgotten.  It’s funny, what manages to worm its way into your brain for all eternity. 
--I imgine that no one else in the world has the same songs on her ipod that I do.  (“Get Low” and “Garden Party”?)  It is probably a reflection of the fact that no two people in the world have quite the same personalities. 
--I am always a little bit embarrassed when other people hear my music.  I used to think it was because I had lousy taste in music.  But now I think it’s because the music you like is so personal—so expressive of who you are—that it feels revelatory, confessional.  Whenever I drive with my window open, I turn the volume on the CD player down.  I just don’t think random truck drivers have to know that I harbor a secret penchant for “Runaround Sue.”

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