Do you have certain moments or memories, where the song playing at the time made it that more significant? I’ve been having some strangely perfect moments lately, marked by the right song at the right time, rather than happy situations. I can’t get them out of my head, so the need to record them came, and so here it goes.
I was driving home the other night and everything just seemed to be perfect. It was just past 12:30, the night was clear, quiet, and dark. I was listening to the album Unmap by Volcano Choir (side project of Bon Iver‘s Justin Vernon and members of Collections of Colonies of Bees) and everything just seemed to have fallen into place.
I was near the album’s end, my first time getting all the way through. I’d just reached the track “Still”, and realized it was a variation on Bon Iver’s own “Woods” from the Blood Bank EP.
And then I saw it.
I almost missed it against the edge of my field of vision, against the fence, among the tall grass and trees. I braked as the deer scattered into the beams of my headlights and onto the street. It was only there for a second, a second and a half at most, before it dashed across the small road. I took a deep breath and counted my blessings as I proceeded forward. And as the song kept building, I tried to hold on to it, I tried to move on but I couldn’t help my thoughts. I remembered the past. I remembered the accident. I remembered the hospital. I remembered the fear. I remembered the guilt. And then I gave it all back. And I made my way home.
I was in my car (again) on another late evening listening to Anathallo‘s Canopy Glow. It’s another album I have had for a long time (this one nearly a year), and still hadn’t finished. This moment had just brought me to the last song on the album, “Tower of Babel”. And as soon as it started I remembered. I remembered everything.
You see, I’ve only heard this song once before this moment. I was riding in my friend’s car. She has knack for making mix CDs and this song appeared on one of them. I excidedly asked her “Is this Anathallo?”, and she had said no, that she wasn’t sure who it was and that she was almost sure it was another band. She said she’d heard the song and the end of a Grey’s Anatomy episode. I kept pushing her, saying I was sure, even positive that it was Anathallo, or esle it was a ridiculus copy-band. But she kept assuring me, and herself that it was NOT Anathallo.
So I went home and Google(d) the band she had mentioned, verifying that they indeed were not that band. She then remembered that it was indeed Anathallo, but knew nothing about the song. Well, the song was “Tower of Babel”, and tonight was the first time I’d heard that song since that moment; nearly four months ago. It was beautiful and it was perfect, because I remembered everything about that moment, that moment with my friend.
It always amazes me, the power music has, to make us remember things we’ve long forgotten, or tried to forget. We have feelings and emotions and moments to which our lives mark time. I love that someone somewhere can write a song, it means something to them, and then I can hear it and attach it to a moment for me. If I was a songwriter I would love to know that my words and music affected someone so much, maybe even hear their story of how the song marked a moment in their life. Anyway, this is all a bunch of rambling. But the point is: let music guide you through your life, good moments and bad ones, significant and not so much.