Monday, September 29, 2008

Weird moments in music

Music plays a big part in our life, here in the Utter household. It started for me very young, since my parents love music of all kinds, from the unforgettable
Mrs Miller (scroll down for the song files), to The Sound of Music soundtrack, which we sang incessantly as kids. I remember many drives to St Louis in our old green Ranch Wagon station wagon, listening to Donna Fargo, singing "The Happiest Girl in the Whole U.S.A.," which my sister still sings, complete with the twang, at the drop of hat.

Memories are made of this.

We've got our own, albeit strange, moments in music, usually in the car, too. Like the time we all went to hear Jill sing with the Indianapolis Children's Choir. It was a Christmas Concert, and afterward, we decided to drive down to the Circle downtown, to see the lights. We ended up somehow with K.C. and the Sunshine Band on the CD player, and drove around the circle I can't tell you how many times, windows down, with all of us singing classics like "That's the Way I like It," and "Get Down Tonight." The kids still talk about that one. It was definitely something to go from the formal concert to disco beats, all while Jill was still in uniform.

We got a lot of strange looks, but we're used to that around here.

One time here at the house, Thomas and I were both on our computers, doing our thing. He was probably about 12 or so, and I realized that he was listening to Frank Sinatra sing "Fly Me To the Moon," or something like that. I commented, "is that Frank Sinatra," and was met with a snarling "WHY does everyone think it's weird that I like Frank Sinatra" followed by glaring silence.

It wouldn't have been weird at all, except the previous two songs had been Metallica and Mindless Self Indulgence.

Then there was the time that he and I drove back from his cousin's wedding, and listened to Lillium, the theme from Elfen Lied, continously, for the two hour trip from Terre Haute to Indianapolis. It's singularly one of the most hauntingly beautiful pieces of music ever, in my opinion, and I think Thomas agrees, to the tune of him listening to it repeatedly for five hours straight one night. Be careful, it's addictive.

Of course, five hours doesn't compare to the time that Dan and I went to see my parents in Winter Park, when we all lived in Florida. We tuned to a station that was playing "Twist and Shout," by the Beatles. Over and over. And over. They played it back to back and, as far as we could tell, without commercial interruption for at least two days straight. We never figured out what that was about, but it definitely elicits a memory every time I hear the song now.

Nowadays, Thomas has something like 3000 songs on his iPod, which he shares with me on the ride to and from school. He's got a little bit of everything in here, except country, because he likes just about any type of music except the twangy stuff. Me, I travel in silence generally, if I'm by myself, but if he's with me, it's Radiohead and Ludo. If it's Jill, it's Jonas Brothers, AC/DC, and the soundtrack from the Patriot (yeah, she's into an eclectic mix of music too), and with Seth, it's usually techno beats. Dan's tendency is toward R.E.M. and the Police, with a side of football commentating.

Me, I have a thing for leaving the same CD in the car for weeks at a time, listening to it over and over, which drives The Brat crazy. One that tends to land there for a season is Nirvana's Unplugged, because I love "The Man Who Sold the World." One time, Thomas' buddy Potter climbed in the van and said, "man, I wish that just once my parents would listen to Nirvana in the car." When I asked him what they listened to, he said "my dad listens to African drum music, and my mom listens to NPR."

Yeah, I guess Nirvana would be a welcome change.

And so, after a long discussion about Radiohead on the way back to school last night, then pulling in the driveway to Miley Cyrus, I went looking for something with a musical bent, and found this vintage poly novelty musical notes print. Wonder what the music on it is? Maybe "Smells Like Teen Spirit?" It'd make me the happiest girl in the whole U.S.A. if you can tell me. It's on ebay, offered by anythingbutlove.

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