Soundtrack to my life

Driving home on Friday at the end of another week, I put our wedding CD on to play. I’ve already written about why we chose the music, but the one song that sticks out like a sore thumb is ‘Down Under’ Men At Work.

It sticks out because it seems to have been one of those songs that has been around my whole life. I can remember listening to it as the BBC showed a Policeman lifting his feet up and wading through water when the Ashes were rained out, (I’ve been looking online, but can’t find what match I am looking for, and my resident cricket guru is playing cricket at the moment). Every time I hear it on the radio, I will stop and listen to it, driving home on Friday I played it 3 times, in 20 minutes, and loved it each time.

We watched a really interesting documentary with Sting on SBS this week. Called The Musical Brain, it looked at why and how the brain analyses music, we knew it was going to be a good one when they opened with ‘Music only exsists in the brain.’ As on the page it only comes alive when it is played with instruments, but is only recognised when the sound patterns in turn are heard and analysed inside our brains. Humans are also the only creatures on the planet that can play music together and create something from nothing, chimps will play with a stick and beat out a tune, but other chimps can’t keep time or match what they are doing, when musicians will often start jamming and improvising, then out of nothing, tunes will appear.

The reason a good song can whizz you back to a place in time is because of the neural links that the sound creates in your brain. When you hear it again, it triggers the same path. This is exactly the same thing that happens when you replay arguments in your head over and over and feel the same anger or pain.

Driving home I started thinking about what music has got me through some troubles and strife and that I love hearing over and over again. I will try and zone into particular songs, but in a chronological order for you, here are the artists that have featured highly through my life, bear in mind I was born in 1975:

1980s
Bucks Fizz, I was devasted at the coach crash that marked the beginning of the end of the group. I was thoroughly over excited when I found a Greatest Hits CD in the library over here and was able to finally get some of their music on to my iPod.

Wet Wet Wet, I wish I could tell you how much this group meant to me when I was a teenager, their music truly spoke to me for the first time. But the way they turned around and shafted Tommy Cunningham made it very hard for me to listen to them for a number of years.

Billy Joel, you know your Dad had a favourite artist that you always played to keep him quiet? This was him. We were taken to see him on his Storm Front tour, we saw him in Birmingham and London, I’ve been to see him here in the Rod Laver Arena (also where we saw Dr Phil!), as I am fully aware that not many people tour Down Under. Mum and Dad have all his albums on tape, LP, CD, just in case? What for I don’t know, but the car rattled with his tapes on our annual camping trips. When I stayed with them before I left the UK, I put on the whole back catalogue into iTunes. What for I am not sure as I don’t listen to him that often, I know all the words to his songs though, but he is a part of me as my blue eyes and skin.

1990s
Dance music, collectively. I love clubbing, well I used to. I’d like to think I would go again, but I hate RnB, gangsta rap and most of the shite that is played now, but back in the day when I was out most weekends… Aside from the fact I am normally crashed out by 10pm now, I loved and still love dance music. Dan calls it my doof doof music. Nothing wrong with that, and every so often when he is out the house, I will put in on loud, and throw some shapes about the bedroom. I clubbed seriously from 1995-2001, so my favourites are within that time span. Ah, back when I was a skinny wee thing.

The Corrs, I’ve been listening to Forgiven, Not Forgotten since Glenn introduced me to them in Lincoln. I still love the album, it is still fresh, and Toss The Feathers is a fabulous piece of music.

Coldplay, I think this is a group that polarises people. Those who get it and those who don’t. I get it.

2000s
Antony & The Johnsons, a surprising entry for some people? Maybe. Watching them on Jools Holland gave me goosebumps though. When they won the Mecury Prize, it was the first and only time I actually owned the shortlisted albums. I doubt that will ever happen again, and it is mainly thanks to the aforementioned Mr Holland. And that I could listen to the radio at work.

The Scissor Sisters, that they had the chutzpah to record Comfortably Numb, which not only was a great version and annoyed the hell out of my ex-husband (bwhahaha) but Pink Floyd members thought it was good too. Cue ex-husband promptly shutting the hell up.

The Killers, I remember one lunchtime at work in London. Becky and I were comparing music notes, I said have you seen Brandon Flowers, I mean really seen him? She said no, we did a bit of a trawl through the internet and she was impressed. I love their music, and brough Sam’s Town over here on my first trip to Oz.

Kaiser Chiefs, enough said in two words there I think.

Sonia’s Santas, a little known group who only every cut one CD. However, the whole weekend is one that I look back on with affection (apart from my epic hangover), and when a song pops up randomly, I grin and think of my best friends.

Have you any idea how much I miss Radio 2?!? The music stations over here are ALL commercial, which infuriates me more than preeety much anything else on earth. So I don’t listen to them, however, this means I have no idea what is current at all now. Hey ho.

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