It is a grey day. I did not sleep very well last night and so I am tired. But it is a “writing” day and so I must get in the frame of mind to work on a blog post or perhaps on a chapter of my “long form” writing project. I am really trying to just get into my flow and to do that I do a bit of a yoga stretch, and some breathing to help ease me into that centered, calm place. I think to myself how nice it would be to have a little music to inspire me through these exercises.
I am now at my computer writing. Secluded in my office and with headphones on my ears, I am cocooned and look through my itunes for music to listen to that will set the tone for my work. Thinking about the yoga stretch, breathe, flow exercise, I am looking at what songs I want to use to create that playlist I had thought about earlier. Maybe I will put 4 or 5 songs on it total. I am looking through the recently played songs and somehow my attention is on a list that tells me how many times each song has been played… I see one has been played 88 times. Well, knowing my affinity to the number 8, I had to see what in fact had that most amount of plays. It was Shawn Colvin’s “Get out of this house.” 88 times… I thought to myself, “there must be some message here,” “maybe this is my anthem!”
For those of us of a particular generation, the unmistakable first bars for the theme of the movie Rocky evokes in us the memory of what that character had to do, the drive he had, what he had to overcome to become the champion that he knew he was inside.
We all need anthems to become champions of ourselves. Music is a great motivational force. We are drawn to different types of music, different songs, melodies, poetry… We look to music to score and accompany our moods – Joyful music when we are happy and melancholy melodies when we are not. Certain lyrics might exactly express how we are feeling at a given moment or period of our life. You might be drawn to a particular song for so many reasons. Perhaps there is a hidden message and you keep listening to the song until you get it. We look for music that we can identify with, that will spur us on…be there to inspire us, soothe us, provide the emotional net for us to fall into or to leap from.
I know we all have had songs that bring up a memory, that whenever we hear that particular song we remember something deeply and on a soul level. Cassette tapes, CD’s, and now playlists are all reflective of and are a musical snapshot of our lives, almost marking periods and distinguishing eras. I go back to some of the playlists and quite frankly, cannot listen to them anymore. I see that I have come so far. And then there are the CD’s that I listened to when I was pregnant with my children… the ones I later listened to with them in my arms and bopped around the house, the music that I used when I danced, the songs that I listened to just to help me through. All stir something inside me.
So what is the message Shawn Colvin has been trying to give to me or is it an anthem to all that I am feeling? The simplistic answer is that it is telling me that all those sad feelings and negative thoughts that I have been dwelling in, all the things I have been trying to let go of, that I should let go of, I need to get them out of “my house,” my head, my consciousness. And clearly it took hearing the words and its driving melody 88 times to finally recognize the message! And so it is my anthem now. Anything that causes me stress or anger or despair, I put on the song and let it help remind me to just direct it all out of this house of mine. Perhaps the song itself stands as a metaphor for something bigger than this moment; maybe it speaks to a philosophy for the journey itself. But for now I will take the simple route, for sometimes less is really more, and simple is the best answer. Oh and by the way, in case you didn’t know, the theme for Rocky is titled “Gonna Fly Now.”
Links for songs!
Shawn Colvin – Get Out Of This House – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k22e6EAPv34&feature=kp
Theme from Rocky – Gonna Fly Now – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ioE_O7Lm0I4