A few years ago, my friend, Cathy S. mentioned a friend of hers who had created a Life Soundtrack. This woman selected songs for special moments in her life. Then, she wrote short “liner notes” to provide some background on why the song or the occasion was significant.
There seem to be no new ideas under heaven, so we borrow others’ creativity, give credit for good ideas, and put our own spin on those inspirations. Think about the music that’s been important to you. Make a list of the songs that have meant something for whatever reason. If you’re inclined, write down or pick out songs that represent stages of life or music you associate with particular rituals. For example, don’t most couples choose a wedding song?
There may be certain songs that can immediately evoke a sense of time and place. As a West Point cadet during Buckner summer, we were going through Armor training at Fort Knox, KY. It seems like every radio station was playing Kenny Rogers’ song: “You Picked a Fine Time to Leave Me Lucille” I hadn’t thought of that song in over 40 years, but listening now brought back memories of stifling heat, driving tanks on dusty trails, firing big shells at far-off targets, and our World War II barracks accommodations. But also, time in the O Club dancing… Memories are not necessarily “good” but they can be powerful.
I’ve recently been revising the playlist I created several years ago. Here’s the current blend of old and new Life Soundtrack:
In honor of my West Point Women 1980 classmates, part of the first co-ed West Point class:
Helen Reddy – I Am Woman (Did we really manage to get this played over the Central Guard Room public address system on the night before our 28 May 1980 graduation?)
Bruce Springsteen – Tougher Than the Rest
We got married at 6AM on the balcony overlooking the Hudson River at the West Point Catholic Chapel. We watched the sun rise listening to:
Cat Stevens – Morning has broken
When I went splat on my last Army parachute jump, I remember hearing this song and hoping to be able to walk and dance again:
Don Henley — All She Wants To Do Is Dance
When we learned we were going to have a baby, Top Gun was in theaters. Many years later, our son is a Coast Guard aviator:
Kenny Loggins – Danger Zone
My son was in flight school when he got married. Their song was:
John Denver – Leaving On A Jet Plane
Having now been married over 41 years, I have decided it’s time to choose a new song:
Savage Garden – Truly Madly Deeply
My list is still a work-in-progress. I have been giving some thought lately to the music that gets played at funerals. If you want something other than Amazing Grace, make your wishes known. I have told members of my spirituality group that I will come back and haunt them (if possible) if that song happens to be played.
Your turn. What are your go-to songs?
© Joan S Grey, 2 October 2021 ∞
IndexCardCure™: The music plays on…