The Music That Fills My Soul

loud car stereoSpring has decided to grace us in the Pacific Northwest and the streets are alive with the sound of music blaring from the rolled down windows of passing cars. I will admit to being one of those crazy people that must have music playing 90% of the time; I can do without TV or internet, but music? I cannot live without it!

Music could actually replace language for me in a way. It inspires me and keeps me going throughout my day. It constantly reminds me of who I am, where I’ve been, and the things I’ve done. I can identify periods and events in my life with the songs I hear. It keeps me motivated to accomplish the tasks at hand – especially if the right type of music comes on; it makes the job seem effortless…almost!

My radio or iPod keeps me sane! When life gets a little too hectic, I can separate and focus better when I pop in those ear buds! Soon, I’m humming and tapping along without a care in the world and being super productive once more. (I also love to sing, so chances are, you can sneak up on me and hear me just jamming! If I know the words, I’m probably singing along…unfortunately, this also applies to those songs that make horrendous ear worms. Dammit!)

Motor City Musical Magic! Being a native Detroit girl, I loves me my Detroit sound!!! It is in my blood! We moved from Detroit to northern Michigan right after the riots in ’68. Even though I was only five, I knew what I liked!Small-town Gaylord just didn’t play the same kind of music that Detroit did. But I soon figured out how to work that little AM transistor radio just right to pick up the Detroit radio stations after bed time, thanks to that magical thing called “skip!” I can remember staying up half the night listening to CKLW across the river from Detroit in Windsor, and KEENER (WKNR) Radio, thinking I’d died and gone to Heaven because they played the greatest music EVER!!!

And visiting Gram in the north suburbs…I could listen to it all day!!! AWESOME! It didn’t have to be Motown hit, but that always helped!! Berry Gordy certainly knew motownhow to pick ‘em! In my book, the Temps and the Tops could do no wrong! Definitely my favorites! I could sing every word, any of the harmony parts and follow along with every move those boys made! I was their only female member and they didn’t even know it!

Recently, KSPS-TV (our Spokane PBS Station) had the Motown 25: Yesterday, Today and Forever special on (from 1983 – celebrating Motown’s silver anniversary). All the greatest from my childhood were there…Even Michael Jackson, when he still had a real nose attached showed up to reunite with his brothers for the first time in years! (Then he wrecked the moment by lip-syncing to Billie Jean! Seriously??  I expect that kind of crap from Brittany Spears but no the King of Pop!)

Of course, my favorite part of the show…The Temps and Tops with that incredible “showdown” medley their biggest hits respectively. Nothing shy of amazing!

SIDE NOTE: I have only recently forgiven Mr. Gordy for moving Motown Records from Detroit to LA in 1972, a event I considered to be complete and total musical blasphemy. But I figure, the guy’s in his 80s…It’s time I ease up on him a little and let it go!!

What fits my mood today & how loud can I crank it without being arrested? I feel fortunate that nearly any kind of “tunage” makes me happy. I usually go for something “has a good beat and is easy to dance to” (apologies to Dick Clark!). If it rocks, it plays! It doesn’t really matter what genre since I like so many styles. Rap, Oldies, Rock, 80’s/New Wave, Country. I kind of like it all. Really. I can usually find something redeeming in each form of music out there…OK….Maybe not Death Metal! Not my thing at all!

I will show my true musical colors, at last! I have never understood the big Stones or Beatlesdebate between the Beatles or the Rolling Stones. After 50 years of that nonsense, I say, “why can’t we have both??” I guess if I had to choose, I would find myself more on the side of the Beatles, but I like the Stones, too!

I can get satisfaction out of both Jumpin’ Jack Flash and Please, Please Me; from Beast of Burden and A Little Help from My Friends. I’ll take a double dose of the Stones albums Some Girls and Exile on Main Street in addition to the Beatles’ Revolver, the White Album and Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band! It’s all good to me!

So, with this manifesto on my personal preferences in musicality completed, I think I’ll crank up something on my Sirius Radio app and finish out the day. Maybe some New Wave. Maybe a little Broadway musical or Jazz. Too bad they don’t have a Beatles Radio station! (Incidentally, the first album I actually bought was the Beatles, A Hard Day’s Night –the Original Movie Sound Track – with my birthday money back in 1968.  I was five. I still have that album!)

Hard Day's Night cover


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