Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Let's Walk Down Memory Lane

Music has always been a very big part of my life.  I can't remember a time when I wasn't singing.  My dad used to say how I would drive him crazy when I sang in the shower, because I "never finished a song." 

Today, as I sat at work, I turned on the 70's channel and heard a Carpenter's song, "Superstar."  Oh, I used to love this song.  I listened to the Carpenters for so many years.  I remember when I lived in Peoria, Illinois, that I heard, "Close to You" for the first time.  We must have had the album in our house, as I can recall it as I look at the picture today.

I listened to the "Now and Then" album and learned all sorts of oldies.  Of course, I thought they were Carpenter originals.  (Johnny Angel, Fun Fun Fun, etc)  I used to mimic how Karen Carpenter sang, and I have to give her some credit for teaching me phrasings and vibrato.  Of course, my voice is much higher than hers, but I do think trying to sing like her probably helped me extend my vocal range.

We sang, "Top of the World" at Russell Elementary School.  I always watched TV specials where she and Richard were performing.  I loved that she played the drums; how cool was THAT.  I still associate rainy Mondays with her soulful voice.

Hearing her sing today brought me back to so many songs of my youth.  I used to have one of those portable record players, and I would listen to 45's and albums. Remember stacking up the albums so they would play continuously?   On Sundays, I would listen to Casey Kasem's Top 40.  (Oh, how I loved the Long Distance Dedication!)  I listened to my mom's albums, (Judy Garland), my brother's albums (John Denver) and my dad's albums.  (Willie Nelson)  I loved all of them. 

We listen to a lot of music nowadays, but it's nothing like when I was a kid.  And, those songs meant so much to me.  I can still sing the lyrics from those songs.  Ask me a song from recently, and I have no CLUE what is being sung!  Is it that I can't hear the lyrics, or I'm not taking the time to listen?

I'll close with some of the songs that really moved me, and always take me back when I hear them.  If you are so inclined, please share some of yours!

Ambrosia:  How Much I Feel
Harry Chapin:  Cat's in the Cradle and the one where he's the taxi driver
Queen:  Bohemian Rhapsody
Willie Nelson:  Blue Eyes
 Supertramp:  We had the 8 track.  I love how they changed tracks mid song
Fiddler on the Roof Soundtrack:  Anetevka, Anetevka....overworked, underfed, Anetevka
John Denver, The Carpenter's:  Any and all albums
Barry Manilow:  Looks Like We Made It  ( slow danced to this with Steve Lanier in the 8th grade)
Elton John:  Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, the whole album
Stevie Wonder:  Songs in the Key of Life
Grease, Saturday Night Fever and Xanadu
Starland Vocal Band:  Afternoon Delight
Captain and Tenille:  Love will keep us together
Three Dog Night

Yeah, I think it's time for me to hit the shower and start singing.  And, maybe this time I'll finish the song?


mel said...

I was touched by your connection to the music.

How about:

Elton - I sat on the roof, and kicked off the moss, well, a few of the verses, well they've got me quite crossed...

Or Willie singing: Time goes by so slowly, and time can do so much...are you still mine?

Oh, and who was this - - '...and the colored girls go do - da do da do da dooooooo...'. Freshmen year in college.

Gotta have me some Bruce cuz baby I was born to run out on the backstreets with Rosalita...

My first 45 - Gary Lewis and the Playboys - - This diamond ring doesn't shine for me anymore...

Oh, gosh, and remember American Bandstand? I always wanted to go on that show and say, "I can dance to it. I'll give it an 8".

SPT said...

Oh man, you two. Love the flashbacks. I was all about Shawn Cassidy and The BeeGees and Neil Diamond. I also knew the entire Grease soundtrack by heart.

angie128 said...

Oh a most excellent post!! Music is so powerful isn't it?

La la la!

Robin said...

OMG, we are in the same era music-wise. I had a friend in highschool who sang and she sounded exactly like Karen Carpenter; real low voice. Thanks for the trip down memory lane!

refil: I think I need a refil on this vanila shake. ;)