Here’s part three of my musical blog series. If you missed either of the last two posts, you should check them out–the first one explains what exactly I’m doing on this blog right now, and the second one is, well, the second one. Happy listening! And as always, feel free to comment :)
SONGS THAT REMIND ME OF HOME
Bohemian Rhapsody (Queen, A Night at the Opera, 1975) It’s just…it shaped rock n’ roll as we know it. So good. Me and my dad and my sisters violently thrash our heads a la Wayne’s World whenever this song comes on the radio. If you don’t know the movie Wayne’s World…you should, and I’m including that version for you so you can contextualize this song. And take a peek into the movies I watched regularly…as a ten year old…ha. Mama, just killed a man/put a gun against his head/pulled the trigger, now he’s dead/Mama, life had just begun/but now you’ve gone and thrown it all away
Lady (Regina Spektor, Begin to Hope, 2006) I’m pretty sure that this song is based on the life of Billie Holiday. It’s so sad and heartfelt and soulful–one of my favorite Regina Spektor songs. Also has a fantastic saxophone solo. I’ve performed it a cappella for an audience a couple times. Probably if anyone ever asked me to sing something off the top of my head, this would be what I’d choose. Lady lights a cigarette/puffs away, no regrets/Takes a look around/no regrets, no regrets/Stretches out like branches of a poplar tree/She says, I’m free/sings so soft as if she’ll break
SONGS FOR THE ROAD
Rolling in the Deep (Adele, 21, 2011) Okay, okay, not the most original choice, I know. But Adele has done amazing things for altos who prefer a bluesy style on the radio, which I deeply appreciate. I love banging on my steering wheel and stomping my foot (obviously not the one on the gas pedal, haha) when the powerful percussion comes in at the third verse in this song. My best friend Anna and I love singing harmonies to this song whenever we’re home together. There’s a fire/starting in my heart/reaching a fever pitch/and it’s bringing me out the dark
SONGS THAT GIVE ME BUTTERFLIES
Thinking of You (And Me) (Love and Theft, Love and Theft, 2012) Now, this song is really sappy, but I like this song mostly because every time I hear it I’m rooting for this guy. Honestly. He’s been friends with this girl, but he’s realizing her likes her, and he’s stepping out of the friend-zone and going for it. It takes guts. I approve. Now I don’t want to go and make things complicated/And keeping you as my best friend would be okay but/what if everything we ever wanted was a whisper and a touch away/I’d rather risk it knowing, oh, than be a fool forever, oh, and never say
P.S. If you’re viewing this on a computer, this particular link has to be opened up on YouTube. Legal rights and all that. Sorry bout it.
SONGS THAT REMIND ME OF HIGH SCHOOL
The Conversion of Saul (Z. Randall Stroope, First Day, 2009) This song was the pinnacle of musical achievement for my time in high school Chorale. Absolutely one of the most meaningful and powerful songs, especially now that I’m actually a Christian. The composition is incredible–the violence of the first half, and the beauty of the second half. So fantastic.. Caedite, vexate, ligate vinculis!/Saul!/Vexate, vexate, vexate Saul! Saul caedite vexate ligate condemn. Condemnate/condemnate/caedite Saul!/Saul!…/Saul…/Saul…/…Why do you persecute me?
Here’s the professional recording:
And our own Chorale! Shout-out to the overly-enthusiastic girl in the middle of the second row with the short haircut and bangs.
SONGS THAT MAKE ME SMILE
Send Me On My Way (Rusted Root, When I Woke, 1994) This song is from Matilda, one of my favorite childhood movies (as a preschooler, I was often mistaken for the girl who played her in the movie), and also Ocean City. I love the happy whistling noise and also the fact that I can barely understand what they’re saying. I would like to hold my little hand/How we will run we will/how we will crawl we will/I would like to hold my little hand/How we will run we will/how we will crawl/Send me on my way/On my way
SONGS THAT MAKE MY HEART ACHE
Magic (Ben Folds Five, The Unauthorized Biography of Reinhold Messner, 1999) This song is about loss. And the imagery is beautiful. Ben Folds plays every instrument in the album recording. Our high school Chamber Choir sang the a cappella arrangement from UChicago. You should check that one out, too. From the back of your big brown eyes/I knew you’d be gone as soon as you could/And I hoped you would/We could see that you weren’t yourself/and the lines on your face did tell/it’s just as well/you’d never be yourself again/saw you last night/dance by the light of the moon/stars in your eyes/free from the life that you knew
SONGS THAT MAKE ME WORSHIP
Absent from Flesh (Sojourn, The Water and the Blood, 2011) This soulful song is foot-stomping, clapping, hand-raising, dancing-in-the-aisles fun. It’s all about how one day all the believers are going to be released from these imperfect bodies and be with God in heaven and it’s gonna be a party. Another one of my favorites to sing. Absent from flesh! then rise my soul/Where feet nor wings could climb/Beyond the sky, where planets roll/And beyond all keep of time
Thanks for listening!!
Erin Elizabeth xoxo