I’ve always liked Adele in a take it or leave it kind of way. Don’t get me wrong, that voice has always blown me away, but, if I’m honest, it wasn’t till I heard one of her latest offerings, ‘When We were Young’ that I was truly captivated. I don’t know whether it’s the incredible melody, the almost ‘should be in a stage show’ vibe about it or the way her voice just takes control of the lyrics and totally delivers. Quite simply, I think it’s awesome.
Music means a huge amount to me and has done for as long as I can remember. Whether it’s playing it, listening to it, having the pleasure of teaching it, watching my little people embrace it in their own unique ways, or altering my ‘when I’m really famous and on Strictly Come Dancing playlist’ (I’d like to tell you this last point is a joke… I’d like to…), I think music is one of those things that really adds colour to life and I’d hate to be without it.
About eight years ago, while charmed by the humour and infectious soundtrack to Mamma Mia the movie, (not to mention being enthralled at the mere presence of Colin Firth), it was the song ‘Slipping through my Fingers’ that stole my heart. At that time, as mummy to a two year old, I was moved to tears as I imagined my little lady getting ready to go to school – an event that seemed so far away. Now, as mummy to three little ladies, two of whom have already headed off ‘school bag in hand’, the reality of that song which I saw as emotive way back then, almost sends me reeling, at a time when each week just seems to vanish and I see my little people grow before my very eyes.
One of the things we thoroughly enjoy, is watching the girls embrace their own unique musical interests and styles – in some very unique ways I might add! While they love a range of comtemporary music, I’d be fibbing if I didn’t confess that I’m always a bit impressed when they can spot Johnny Cash, to name just one of the more eclectic offerings they’ve had no choice but embrace – when daddy likes the less obvious choices for the 21st century, you’ve either got to like it or lump it and, with the littles, it’s definitely not the latter! One of the funniest ‘phases’ with Miss M recently, has been watching and listening to her summon one of us to put on a Jim Reeves record (my childhood Christmas … Did anyone else even have a Christmas record?!) – I kid you not – probably the only instance where, in her own wee way, she’ll get away with calls of ‘Bimbo!’, just so she can bust some of her little moves!
I probably have my other half to thank for widening my musical circle of appreciation as well and he’s probably why a Buddy Holly song was our choice for a first dance almost twelve years ago and hearing it now still makes me stop in my tracks. How true those lyrics are to us years later – maybe even moreso. As life has thrown a range of circumstances at us, there certainly have been times to sigh and cry but, thankfully, there have been many joys to share and in both the good and bad times, there’s no-one I’d rather have at my side.
Over the past week, while listening to some classical music for work, it occurred to me that I really don’t listen to enough of it – not that I haven’t had some very classical phases – but maybe I could be doing with a few more. For me personally, I suppose one of the more obvious choices, Pachelbel’s ‘Canon in D’ has always been a favourite but, possibly the one closest to my heart is ‘Gabriel’s Oboe’ by Ennio Moricone.This is one that really got under my skin and for me, was the one I wanted to walk down the aisle to at our wedding – a moment, I suppose, involving the two most important men in my life. It still gives me goosebumps and a lump in my throat… what else but music can do that?
During my teens, the phenomenon that was/is the 500 years at number one (ok, some exaggeration, but only some ;o) ) ‘Everything I Do’ introduced me to Bryan Adams and a few years later, his was the first concert I ever went to and I wasn’t disappointed. ‘Summer of ’69’ is one of those infectious feel-good songs and I absolutely loved hismore recent ‘You Belong to Me’ – which will (bizarrely) be my soundtrack to Christmas 2015… with memories of some very dodgy kitchen dancing and lots of smiling faces ( not sure what dance to put it with, but it’s a definite maybe for the Strictly play list!!)
The holiday to Gran Canaria will forever be immortalised in Robbie Williams’ Rock DJ and The Corrs’ Breathless. The first roadtrip I ever endured (bear with me here) with my now husband, will always be remembered thanks to Oasis (and yes, it’s a looooooong road to Portrush with many opportunites to repeat!!!) ‘The Road to Amarillo’ will always remind me of watching the life of a loved one hang in the balance (no-one ever said the soundtrack to real life was well-matched) and ‘Reach for the Stars’, while inadvertently making me smile, will always remind me that I am merely playing second fiddle to Rachel Stevens (It’s ok… Colin and I will always have ‘Our Last Summer’… though maybe the less said about that particular musical offering the better!)
I’ll always have a softer spot for Take That in their second incarnation – it’s always worth having ‘a little patience’ while you ‘Shine’ and ‘Reach Out’ you know … sorry! And, ‘Would you like to Swing on a Star’ will forever remind me of its existence as the theme tune to a programme I watched many moons ago about a girl who could pause everything around her by merely touching two fingers together and use those frozen people and moments to fix/ alter/ change things. Oh man do I wish a quick chorus of it would do that for me now… how amazing would that be?!
The fact of the matter is though, life doesn’t have a pause button and whether we like it or not, every moment of every day is a once in a lifetime opportunity – something I probably need to remember more often. I’ve recalled just some of the secular pieces of music that label my memories – I could write another 1000 words (and maybe at some point I will) on the sacred pieces that have marked some of the most significant events, moments and memories that are stored up somewhere around my heart, because, isn’t that really where all our very own remembrances belong?
For now though, I want to take this moment, right here, to remind myself of how precious every moment is – how we need to focus on times that are special and unique to us and for me, that can mean a lesson in priorites… like actually letting the girls get on with making their own pizza for lunch – even if ‘lunch’ from start to finish (i.e. when I eventually interevened with the dustpan and brush to try and find my floor again!) lasted a good couple of hours. I’m pretty sure they enjoyed it way more than if I’d been dictating every step… even if I had to fight every instinct to stop myself doing just that!!
Our soundtrack for that? The Adele 25 album and, more than once, ‘When We were Young.’ I could do worse than remember to enjoy all those precious times before my little people grow up any more.
As I become increasingly aware of how quickly each moment comes and goes I can’t help but agree with her idea to ‘photograph you in this light In case it is the last time
That we might be exactly like we were’.
What an amazing thought that each individual second is a non-repeatable, once in a lifetime offer to live life and enjoy it to the full! And as I look back on those times, I know I will always take a moment of my own to unleash my inner Agnetha and sing (with some relief you’ll be glad to know, in a place where no-one can hear me) ‘Thank you for the Music’!