There is one song that I distinctly recall having a profound effect on me when I first heard it... Not in any life altering way, but in a deeply moving way. At the time I know that I would not have been able to explain why, but now I think I can. Now I think I understand. The funny thing is that I remember specifically thinking after listening to it for the first time, that this song was it... it was the be all and end all... there would never be another song like it.... ever. Of course I was wrong, but ... that being said, there has not yet been a song that had such an effect on me that I would actually remember the details of the moment it hit me.
A short while ago, I began to explore the way my memory works, but I barely touched the surface. For the most part I ended up with more questions than answers. Listening once again to that one song, and revisiting other songs from the past in the last little while has somehow helped me to find some answers.
Yes, we all know that music is a form of expression. We know that music evokes emotion. However to me, music was much more than that. The music that I was drawn to, that became a part of me, that music expressed what I could not, or would not either feel or express. Someone else was feeling it, someone else was expressing it, and the music gave me an understanding of those feelings and emotions not present in this person. In looking back now at the long list of songs that I can remember from my youth, there are plenty of ballads and love songs, but the words were just icing smoothed over the music, and even then as now, I know that I would not want to eat the icing on its own. For a greater part of my life, music did not elicit an emotional response from me (sorry, I know that line was used by little Spock in Star Trek), but it did provide a flicker, a spark, or sputter... perhaps a twinge. I have no idea if this makes any sense at all, but it is how it is.... or was.
Whether the music and lyrics were beautiful and romantic or sad, or loud and obnoxious and sometimes incomprehensible, I appreciated them for what they were and for their freedom of expression, or their expressiveness. If... and I say... if I happened to sing along with them, it didn't mean that I felt the same way.
What it boils down to is that what I was incapable of feeling or expressing, the music did for me... and that was sufficient. For whatever reason, to my dismay, this has changed to some degree in the past year, as evidenced by something I wrote called "Metallica made me cry." I'm starting to get the feeling that I didn't feel anything because there was no reason to feel anything all these years... notwithstanding of course a couple major emotion inducing life events, but I was hoping I was done with those. Apparently though, as life drags on, it no longer has to be an event... a song can make me cry for crying out loud. Who knows what else lurks within. Scary thought.
That one song: