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Illustrations: Musical Memories
Posted by EyeCandyRayce on Sunday, August 14, 2005 - 08:56 AM PST

Experiences
There are songs that bring us memories. Memories of pain, joy... sex.

I have a memory associated with Massive Attack - Teardrop.

A memory of my ears plugged with earphones attached to one of the first MP3 players that came out. The thing could only hold one song at a time and Teardrop was that song. It was that song because there was no other song that fit the early morning road of fog clinging to evergreens as a I walked to the bus stop. Or the view of Seattle from West Seattle - Admiral Way look out point (the best view of Seattle that exists) as the bus reached the highest point before decending down the long road to the bridge. That high point where Seattle, it's roots shrouded in a heavy layer of mist, always looked like massive mechanical trees sticking out above the clouds of heaven. You couldn't see the streets of the city or the waters of the puget sound from that level.

Then the bus would decend down that long road to the industrial zone. I always loved the clouds of steam rising from the warehouse at the bottom of the hill where they poured metal into long beams of red hot lines that traveled out into the elements to cool on their way to their next point of creation. If you sat in the right place of the bus, you could see the hot liquid pouring smoothly from the big ashen cauldrons.

Then the bus would move onto the West Seattle bridge and to another high point as the bridge arched up into the sky. High enough for ships to pass beneath it into the industrial loading areas where men labered moving gravel onto flat barges. Where factories loaded shipments to other parts of the inland ocean. The Fjords of the northwest.

Exiting the freeway maybe a mile away there was always this homeless man sleeping under the bridge. His big black dog tucked under the sleeping bag with him. The bike he rode with a childs yellow tent on wheels attached to the back that I would later see during my lunch break in the heart of the old brick parts of Seattle. The dog sitting happily in the back, his tongue hanging out as though they were moving at 60 miles an hour in pure joy.

Then it was down 1st where I would watch the factories and warehouses move past the window. Stopping occasionally to let off a man or woman wearing permanently stained jeans and shirts, lunch boxes or bags in their hands as they made their way to a job that you could see them wasting their life away at.

Once in the old part of Seattle the bricks began. Brick buildings lined up in rows of 4-5 tall structures all built together. When I got off the bus I would walk past a flower shop that would toss the pettles of old flowers out onto the sidewalk. I remember listening to the music as I picked up one of the pettles and pressed it into my paper journal where it stays to this day, still yellow at it's base and light red near the tip. The colors may be faded but the memory is not. This part of the city was old. Built after the great Seattle fire of 1889 when the mayor declared that all the buildings should be made of stone. Here, where the sidewalks beneath my feet hide tunnels where the city had once been a single floor lower. Raised so that the sewers would stop turning toilets into fountains of feces in the businesses and apartments lining the waterfront.

I remember walking across the square shaped boxes places in the pavement that had once been made of clear bottle cap glass allowing men to look up ladies skirts as they passed above. Their round peep shows now turned to a beautiful shade of purple with age.

I would enter my work through a door next to the Central Tavern. Established in 1892, the office I worked in had once been on a floor occupied by prostitues who would lead the gents up the back stairway that we now used to take out the trash. Entering the building was always a different kind of beauty. A single stairway of brick walls. An old rail that was stained a red brown and stairs that creaked beneath your feet as you made your way up to the third floor.

This is the solid memory that this song holds. I experienced that every morning. Sometimes, when I listen to it, my life seems empty. Now is one of those times.

Now my mornings are filled with a rushed dress, wishing I could hit the snooze bar just one more time. Into the car where I drive down a busy highway on the east side, 20 or so miles from Seattle. The music I listen to is chaotic and changes daily. Here I work from a building with an amazing view of Lake Washington and I avoid looking because that place holds too many bad memories for me. He has ruined this place as much as he once made it magical and amazing.

Tell me about a song that holds memories for you. Don't be ashamed to make it a long tale. I love to read as much as I love to write. Share a part of you so I may know you better and so others who read through these comments may know you as well. A private moment that sticks in your mind and brings words to your fingers through this posted request.


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Re: Musical Memories
by bettie_x (strangersangel@hotmail.com)
on Aug 22, 2005 - 10:50 PM
(User info | Send a Message) http://bettie_x.tripod.com/
As much as I hate nirvana, when i hear anything from their "unplugged" album I smell clay and remember being a fat 14 year old at a second hand potters wheel dreaming of being a pottery sensation. Barbara Mandrell takes me to the redwood forrest or Lake Tapps in wa, on a car trip with my poppa, in a lincoln continental that smells like gramma's second hand smoke and tic-tacs, being barely able to see over the dashboard from the fat bouncy seats. Patsy Cline and Pat Benetar put me back in my two tank deisle ford monster truck, plowing over potholes in backwoods enumclaw, screaming laughter with my best friend danielle, and looking for places by the river to smoke and talk about past and future failures and wants and some dirty joke she heard from some pregnant girl in her alternative highschool. My dad had a record, it was "65 rock" or "65 highschool hop" that we all used to boogey to, "it's my party", "runaway", "loui loui" on and on, kickin it up in our pajamas in the middle of the day while my dad sat and laughed and turned the volume WAY higher than mom would ever have allowed if she were home, and then put on a johnny cash 8 track "ring of fire" and play his beatles albums. Daddy's rock and roll, and show us pictures of his motorcycle in highschool, with mom on the back. Sunlight through the yellow curtains onto the brown carpet, really warm, nap time warm, the chantelles in the background, toes in that warm warm carpet and free the way only a 5 year old in her pajamas in the middle of the day could be with dad's speakers blasting dad's music from dad's record player. When I moved back into this house, those godawful curtains where still folded above the laundry room, nobody had touched them in 15 years. I put them back up. I borrowed dad's sock hop record, and I boogied when nobody was around.
I listen to "appetite for destruction" in my oldest sister's old room, now my painting room, and remember when my parents pitched a fit that she painted it grey and put in a blacklight. We would sit in there, the three of us and listen to madonna, dangerous toys, poison, motley crue, gnr, cinderella, wasp and read verboten teen beat magazines, trade stickers, and eat chapstick (you know, the big fat flavored kind that BEGGED eating). When I hear gnr, I remember the few times my oldest sister and I got along when we were kids.
Bauhaus is what ties me to michael. We lived and breathed it, our first big date was the resurection tour. I remember bying tickets for california, trying to figure a way down there, when neither of us had jobs or money. I remember buying more tickets when they came to seattle. His room in his mom's house, wallpapered with his personality. The smell of his old tired bed, the insence, his neice sneaking in when we were napping to watch tv or try to sneak into bed with us. Watching wrestling on a black and white tv, jerry springer, sneaking in through his window at 2am simply because I didn't have a cerfew anymore and did it cause I could. I walked down the isle to the Cure's "wish", but celebrated that night at the bar when he sang 2 live crew on karaoke and threw my name into the dirtiest part of the song.

I know this is a lot, but once I discovered music, it's had it's grip on me since. I have a lot of misery tied to classical music, but once in a while I remember it, put it on, and happily wallow, because I'm happy now, and it can't hurt me.

I'm glad you posted this. It's a fine article. Thank you.


Re: Musical Memories
by Reki (lon_Esa_nx@hotmail.com)
on Aug 29, 2005 - 05:07 AM
(User info | Send a Message)
I read this article about a week ago and couldn't think of a single musical memory worth mentioning. You know, everyone has those trivial ones. What cd you happened to be obsessed with and thus heard a lot while you were taking part in one of your other obsessions like, say, video games. For an example from my life, that would be Blink 182 - The Mark Tom And Travis Show.

While I was never much of a fan of Blink 182 and still am not, I always liked their live material. That cd is a live recording of mostly their older songs before they became very tame and popular among teenage girls. I listened to that cd a lot while I played Final Fantasy IX.

I'll always remember listening to Carousel and various other tracks on that cd as I made the little pixel characters move around the screen, or more specifically moving Zidane across the deserts of Cleyra and Madain Sari. I will also never forget listening to Wendy's Song, Man Overboard, Dammit, Dick Lips, Wendy Clear and various other tracks as I assault Blazer Beetles outside of Lindblum or thoroughly get my ass handed to me by Grand Dragons in Gizamaluke's Grotto. I'll never forget listening to Peggy Sue or Voyeur or What's My Age Again as I explore Fossil Roo on the way to the Outer Continent. Or while exploring the mountainside and forests outside of Treno.

That's what I meant by trivial. Everyone has these.

But for one unique to me, which is probably what you're asking for, I would have to go with a single song by The Havoc titled "Made It This Far". I heard this song earlier today and was reminded of one memory I have.

It was cold. It was raining really hard. I had my big puffy gray and black coat on with the zipper up to my chin. My cd player was tucked away in one of the pockets, zipped up so as not to fall out while speeding down the road on my 18 speed bike.

The concrete streets were as gray as the skies.

I was at an intersection. Behind me was a bank. And a rather visually appealing fountain, for once not engulfed in suds because of reckless teenagers. On the other side of the street was a furniture store. That would be ahead of me, where I was going. To my right across to another side of the 4 way intersection is a credit union with a pretty painting of airplaines on the side wall. Opposite of that is a food store.

I was waiting for the light to turn green. The car nearest to me was dark green. Obviously one of the newer models at the time because it looked all flashy and new. The farthest vehicle was a red truck which had obviously seen its share of difficulties.

Behind me was also a small family of three using two umbrellas to cover the three of them. They were walking to my left, which would have been in the direction of Silver's house who I had not yet actually met. On the other side of the street was an older man in a gray longcoat walking along the side of the furniture store to stay out of the rain, he was walking towards the food store.

Me, though, I was standing by the pole with the button that makes the walking man flash. Just standing there with my bike and listening to The Havoc - Made It This Far. I was completely soaked.

A lot of people would call that miserable. I would call it beautiful. At that exact moment, everything in life (not just mine, but all of life) felt.. right. As if everything was in perfect working order, and changing anything would ruin the balance of the world.

I was on my way to a friend's house. The ride back home the next day was much less beautiful and memorable. Something had changed, and the world was again wrong.


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