So, we’ve hit that crunch time in any A to Z challenge.
The letter “x”.
Doing ukulele covers for “u” kinda made it lame to do xylophone covers for “x”.
But, if you feel so inclined, click here for an absolutely awesome xylophone cover of Lady Gaga’s Bad Romance.
Which brings me to my choices for today.
I’ve mentioned before on this blog how music is very much time and place for me. This quote from the movie Coyote Ugly (2000) sums it up:
I remember the first time my mother played me “Bridge Over Troubled Water” by Simon and Garfunkel. I remember exactly what she was wearing. I remember exactly how her hair smelled. I remember exactly how I felt.
And every time I hear that song, I remember exactly what she was wearing and exactly how her hair smelled and exactly how I felt … because the great songs last forever.
In that same vein, there are songs that bring me right back to certain moments and people in my life.
So here’s some songs I never would have known or loved were it not for the guys who introduced me to them.
Depends how you define the term.
We dated, we seriously dated, or we “hung out” in that awkward way where you didn’t want to “label” our relationship because you weren’t ready for commitment.
And in two cases, we’re now pretty good friends.
My mother told me you date to figure out what you can live with – and what you can’t – in marriage – so as to know when you meet your match.
You all helped me get there.
And along the way, you also introduced me to some great music that I will forever connect with you and those stages of my life.
That said – here we go!
1. California Love – Tupac feat Dr. Dre (1995)
So, our eyes met across a crowded dance floor during university frosh week.
I was interested, but currently still with my high school boyfriend.
Because, like, that was FOREVER.
Except for the fact that this other girl at frosh knew about me because “OMG, YOU’RE THAT LOUISE!?!” as in the girl who his ex had harboured a cross-city hate-on for all last year because they were still together.
Said other girl to 19-year-old me: “Sorry, random girl I just met at the bar. Did I just crush your universe? Umm. … Shots?”
Me: Yes (shots). And no (other).
It’d been an ego rough summer of “you’re not good enough, I’m not sure” drama with the high school boyfriend.
I was kinda already done by that stage.
We broke up all proper before I threw myself into re-bound world with all the advice my momma gave me.
He loved Tupac. Even got a Tupac inspired tattoo. I remember when Tupac was shot right after frosh week and I clipped the article from my parent’s newspaper to bring to him so he could stick it up on his wall in res.
The romance ended in three weeks. But I never hear that song without thinking about frosh week, first year university, and him.
2. Come on Eileen – Dexy’s Midnight Runner (1982)
So after romance fizzled with the Death Row Records fan, a friend on the swim team coordinated a “club outing” to set me up with one of the guys on the team and we ended up dating.
For three weeks.
So, like, EPIC.
We’re still friends and both involved in the swim team alumni activities. It just wasn’t meant to be.
He got really excited when this song played at the bar. It was a memorable quirk – because, really, how can you not love someone who loves Dexy’s Midnight Runner?
And he’d request Depeche Mode for me.
So – YAY!
After first year university I got myself a job as a lifeguard at Britannia Beach in Ottawa and figured it was time to break that rule about not dating someone you work with.
We dated through second year university; he ended up swimming varsity with me; and he introduced me to Adam Sandler beyond his acting career. I have to admit, I’ve never really appreciated the whole goat skit – but I love this one. It speaks to my soul.
And the guy? It ended badly. While we were dating he gave me an original Star Wars movie poster. I still have it and will give it back if I ever hear from him as I always felt a bit bad that I ended up with it.
4. Zoot Suit Riot – Cherry Poppin’ Daddies (1997)
There was a swing dancing revival when I was in third year university and this bar downtown called The Cave use to host swing dance nights.
As a former high school band geek (clarinet), piano player, tap dancer and all round music lover, this was pretty awesome for me.
I’d recently bumped into this guy who had played saxophone in the band with me and he was into the whole craze. Nothing serious dating wise, but a lot of dancing all night.
I still remember a few of the simple moves and can break those bad boys out at weddings.
5. Let it Rain – Amanda Marshall (1995)
I had my Tarot cards read in the summer before my fourth year of university.
Given the “about to move out into the big world” life-changing “now you really have to decide what you want to be when you grow up” timing of this reading, I obviously asked that serious question: “Will I find a boyfriend this year?”
Short answer? No. I’d meet someone later in the year, but nothing lasting.
Well, there he was at Rooster’s Coffeehouse at the table I sat down at to relax at after writing the last exam of my undergrad degree.
I figured anything that foretold was probably worth checking out.
It lasted a bit over a month and aside from a large circle of forever bar going friends (which was exactly what I needed), he also played guitar. Specifically, I remember him playing Let it Rain one night at a bar with this girl who had amazing hair and who sang it perfectly. And, while this is the exception on the list in that I already knew and liked the song, that’s what I forever after pictured every time I hear it.
Really – she had SERIOUSLY amazing hair.
As for him, he still plays guitar, my husband likes him, and we’re still friends.
What about you? Any music that makes you think in non-traumatic ways of past dating, or music that brings you back to specific places in time? Let me know!