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The Soundtrack of My Life

I was just clicking through some of the playlists on my iPod and started thinking about certain songs that had meaning to me. There are songs that when you hear them, you immediately think back to a specific time in your life—good, bad, traumatic. So I wondered if I could put together a soundtrack of my life. I know this is only the tip of the iceberg and I’m missing tons, but these are a few that stand out immediately.

Here they are in no particular order:

Wonderful Tonight, Tony Bennett version): This was our first dance at our wedding.

What A Wonderful World, Louis Armstrong: This is my dad’s favorite song so we danced our father-daughter dance to it at my wedding. It brings tears to my eyes whenever I hear it.

American Pie, Don McLean: I grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area, and I remember hearing this song for the first time when I was a kid and my parents were driving across the Bay Bridge, which connects Oakland to San Francisco. The song started just as we hit the toll booth and ended just as we drove into San Francisco. I always thought that was cool, so when I started driving, I’d play that song as I crossed the Bay. The bridge is 8.4 miles long and the song was just over 8 minutes. It was perfect.

Lucky Star, Madonna: When I was a freshman in high school, my best friend’s mom took us into San Francisco for the day to shop and eat. One of our first stops in Union Square was Tower Records. I will never forget walking in, hearing Lucky Star playing overhead, and immediately needing to know who that was. I bought the cassette tape immediately. And that began my love affair with Madonna’s music.

Duran Duran, Planet Earth: This was one of the first Duran Duran songs I had ever heard and I was hooked. I was a total New Wave kid the first couple of years of high school and adored them. And Roger Taylor (I had a thing for drummers). Oddly, as protective as my parents were, they let me go to the Oakland Coliseum with friends for concerts (I think I can thank my older brother for that). The year Rio came out, I was determined to go to see Duran Duran live. One of the local radio stations was giving away tickets if you were the right caller. One night I sat by the phone redialing over and over and actually won—no easy feat in the days of the rotary phone. I was so excited. But I managed to get myself grounded—I’ll be damned if I can remember what I did that was so horrible—and I wasn’t allowed to go. I was devastated, especially when one of the girls from school had front row seats and came back with Simon LeBon’s trench coat. I never did get to a Duran Duran concert.

Bounce, Rock, Skate, Roll; Stayin’ Alive (or almost anything from the Saturday Night Fever Soundtrack; Last Dance and pretty much any disco: I spent every Saturday at the roller rink for a year or so when I was about 10 or 11, doing the whole Roller Disco thing. In the morning, I’d take an hour group lesson to learn to spin and jump and skate like a bad ass. I could shoot the duck, skate on my toes and spin like a pro. Then after class, it was, “All skate, all skate”. I had my pink satin jacket and the boys wore their Angels’ Flight pants. It was hot stuff for a kid. I had so much fun, though, and  I bought a pair of roller skates a last year. I haven’t had the guts to use them yet, but I joked with Lesley that I’d totally hold my 40th birthday at a roller rink. Good God, do they still exist?

Lights, Journey. My brother is eight years older than I am and he’s influence a lot of my early music taste. He introduced me to rock—Rolling Stones, The Who, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Blue Oyster Cult and a million other bands. One band I fell in love with was Journey. They’re a San Francisco group that includes some members of early Santana (another awesome artist). Steve Perry’s voice was awesome. Lights, Wheel in the Sky, Lovin’, Touchin’, Squeezin’ are all still on rotation on my iPod.

I could probably write a 6,000-word post on this. I’d include everything from Sweet Home Alabama and Free Bird to Jay-Z’s 99 Problems and Public Enemy’s Fight the Power along with Neil Diamond’s Sweet Caroline (no, Bill, not because I like it but because my dad would sing this song every time we took a road trip when I was a kid). And, of course, U2. And Metallica. And Guns N Roses. Pat Benetar (my first concert) And, well, see? This could go on forever.

What would be included in the soundtrack of your life?


2 Responses

  1. TA DA! Here I am! Oh my god. Have been so out of blog-touch this week.
    So funny – my mom’s favorite song is the same as your dad’s (and I actually like it a lot too.)

    I’m not sure what would be in the soundtrack of my life….there are just so many damn choices. There would be some Bon Jovi though and Nelly’s “Hot in Herre” will forever be my theme song for you. 😉

  2. Right! “Hot in Herre!” How could I forget?! What other cheesy songs are on the list?

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