I’ve been thinking about music a lot lately. Music has always been very important to me. It’s one of the primary reasons that I chose radio broadcasting as my career. Now that I am what we in the radio community call “on the beach” (without a radio job), music means even more to me. It could have something to do with not having to listen to the same five songs over and over anymore. Yes, we are aware that we play the same songs over and over and over. Don’t blame the programmers. It’s the nature of the beast. A formula calculated over the years by some consultants and research consisting of time spent listening versus the listeners’ desire to hear their favorite songs every time they get in the car… yada yada yada.
I could go on and on, but I won’t. Well, not about that at least. This week, it’s all about the music. It will be next week, too. It’s kind of a two-part series. I know; I’m a regular J. R. R. Tolkien.
On my run this morning, my Skid Row Pandora station betrayed me. Not like when it plays the Johnny Solinger led Skid Row. That is just inhumane. This was not as extreme. It all started with the ballad “I Remember You.” Not exactly the tempo I normally choose for a three-mile run. But it’s Skid Row, one of my favorite bands of all time, so I let it play through. It was followed by Poison’s “Every Rose Has it’s Thorn,” “I Still Love You” by Scorpion and “Is This Love” by Whitesnake.
This playlist could have been an ‘80s mix tape! It brought me back to my teen and pre-teen days playing air guitar in my bedroom to these very songs, thinking to myself “Why won’t Brandi just say yes?!” Back then, every love ballad that came on the radio was about Brandi.
You see, Brandi was my middle school/high school crush. This is no big revelation or anything. Everyone knew it. I asked her to be my girlfriend no less than four times. She said “no” no less than four times. And as things sometimes play out at that age, she started going out with my best friend. Ouch! My first lesson on life and love.
Now, much time has passed and things have worked out very well for both of us. Brandi now has wonderful kids and a great husband who is a paralympic medalist. A great guy. And I have since moved on to my new obsession: my wife Monica. She’s a great mom and a beautiful woman. Very motivated, she has a great job and is able to back me up as I go chasing my dreams of hosting a morning radio show. She has given me three kids who are beyond amazing. Now, every love ballad I hear is about her. The lyrics seem to carry much more weight, too.
As for Brandi, I’d say Brandi and I are each doing just fine. And we can share a laugh at the memory when we occasionally bump into each other around town.
But the music is still there. I still love it. In fact, I have a new appreciation for the lyrics of those songs. I finally got the love they were singing about. The one I had hoped for as a twelvie in my bedroom strumming my air guitar. The love worth fighting for. The love worth making weird faces while lip-synching and playing my air guitar. Not that I still do that now or anything. Nope. Especially not in my car.
As for the three-mile run that started this whole revelation… after ballads for most of the run, I finally got a change of tempo for the last mile. Guns N’ Roses came on with “Mr. Brownstone.” Although it’s about a love that thankfully I never have known, the tempo worked perfectly for that home stretch.
However, it brought about another revelation. One that I will continue next week.