What songs bring back memories for you?

April 12, 2016

“One song can bring back 1000 memories.”  (Mojo TV) – as seen on the Jack’s Winning Words blog. For those not from this area, Mojo is a local DJ and personality who does radio and TV work in the Detroit area.

I’ve written here a few times about the impact that music has on our lives and how some tunes can invoke strong reactions or memories. There are songs that we associate with happy occasions like weddings and some that are remembered as part of funerals. Manylistening to music couples have “their song”, the special song that they remember from a dance or a date or a special occasion in their lives. Almost anyone who has had an American wedding and reception can remember the hokey pokey song or maybe the Chicken Dance. Many ethic weddings have their own ethic music and dances that are brought to mid by certain tunes.

Jack went on to write that the song “Somewhere Over the Rainbow”, from the Wizard of Oz, is one of his favorites, because of its message of hope. I tried to use Google to find out what the most popular songs are for women and men. The results really are determined by how you phrase the search. The top ten power songs for women are shown in this YouTube video. For men it depended greatly on the search too, with this compilation of the top 10 Karaoke songs that men like to sing along to seeming to be a good answer. In other results women liked the more romantic songs based upon love stories while men choose sports or action themed songs. Who woulda thunk it?

listening to music on phoneIt’s been quite a while since music or catchy songs had much real impact on my life, but I still recall the songs that seemed so important in my youth and a few can still make a feeling weal up inside. These days I’m as likely to be humming or quietly singing a song from our church service as anything. There’s something honest and reassuring about many of the little tunes that we sing during a service that make them stick in your head. Perhaps I’m gravitating towards the funeral song end of the musical spectrum as I get older, but I prefer to think of the church songs that stick in my head now as being songs of hope, too.

Music and songs provide important parts of the overall experience in movies and in life. Try to imagine a movie without the background music to help set the mood. Music and song play a similar role in our lives. What songs stick in your head? What songs bring back fond memories or memories of things that you’d rather forget? What are the songs of your life? If you want to have an all-night discussion with friends, ask the question, “What was listening toi music.pngthe greatest song ever made?” Again, it depends upon how you ask the question in Google. The answer to a question what are the top ten rock songs of all time returns the list at the end of this link.  However, ask what the top 10 country songs of all time are and you get what’s at this link. One could go on and on thorough the various genres. Of course it always and must come down to you – what do your think is the best song ever? Then it is.

What songs get to you ?

October 20, 2014

“Science cannot tell us why an old song can move us to tears.”  (Erwin Schrödinger) – a quote seen on the Jack’s Winning Words blog.

metal rockerWe all tend to have certain songs that can evoke strong emotional reactions – sometimes happy and sometimes very sad, but almost always involving someone else who immediately comes to mind. Many couples have what they call “our song”; some song that they associate with a special time in their relationship; maybe a first dance or their wedding dance or a first date. Many people also have very sad songs that cause long suppressed emotions of loss or a time in their life that they’d rather be able to put behind them. For me, the Paul McCartney song “Yesterday” is an especially strong emotional trigger that immediately takes me back to my college days – yes the song really is that old – and the loss of my first true love in college.

I am also fortunate to have many great songs that kick off the happy memories of meeting the eventual great love of my life (48 years of happy marriage this year), such as “Hang on Sloopy”, by the McCoys and “(You’re My) Soul And Inspiration”, by the Righteous Brothers. It was the Golden era of early rock and roll and we partied hearty in those days. There are many songs from that era that can make us both smile.

What songs move you? Which ones bring a smile and which cause tears to whelm up in your eyes? Science can’t explain why, but I’ll bet you have some good stories behind the reactions.

Some movies (whether big screen or made for TV) have the same impact. There are few, if any, men who can watch the made for TV movie Bryan’s Song without reaching for a tissue. The same is true of some movies that might have been thought to appeal to women only. Love Story, Ghost, and perhaps even Brokeback Mountain are great examples. There is just something about such movies that reaches into us and pulls at some strings in our hearts or dredges up long lost memories in our minds and causes our reactions.  Science can’t explain it, but I think we can. Those are reactions that are causes by memories of things on our own lives of great joy or great pain or sense of loss.  We aren’t really crying about what we see on the screen or hear on the radio; we’re reliving a similar moment in our own lives.

So long as we are able to have that quick cry and then move on, back in the present and not stuck in the past, we are OK. It’s good for us let it out every now and then; but only if we can then move on.