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Monday, June 05, 2006

Captured in a Song

Much in the same way that Oz had posted lyrics of two songs he happened to really like, I would like to talk about a song that seemed to come to me at one of the lowest points in my life, so far. The song? Lullaby of Clubland by Everything but the Girl.

It's an odd choice for a song to admire, especially for someone like me who lives by REM, Radiohead, U2, and a couple of other bands predominantly. But music has a funny way of breaking into one's life when one least expects it, and this is just one of those times.

The first time I heard this song was in Ashwin's car, sometime in February or March if I remember correctly. We were on our way to a dhaba (roadside eatery, traditionally patronized by travelers) to grab something and to catch up because it had been a good six months since we last sat down and had a chat. So, there we were heading down and just driving around after, when I suddenly hear this song and the first verse blows me away.

How much of yourself do you give away
After someone's left your life in disarray?
It still hurts
But it won't show
Because I'm too proud
So you're never ever gonna know.
And it's hard to express how much, or how closely, this seemed to talk about what was happening to a musical mirror that reflects the reality of a life that you're too busy leading to notice what it's made up of.

The tune was pretty catchy too, but at this point I was already waiting for the second verse to come on and be as profound.

How much of the day can you sit around
Letting all your feelings drag you underground?
I don't care and I do care
Because I want it
If I know that it's out there everywhere.
Damn! I mean it just hit the nail on the head without even taking aim, or something. And for a moment it felt like tremendous relief was washing over me...not because there was someone out there who seemed to understand exactly what was happening, but it was like the emotional release was signaling me to move on, or at least that it was time to.

I didn't shed a tear or anything...and I'm not trying to be macho by saying that. It didn't bring me to the verge of tears. It was more like a sort of assurance that these things happen and that it was time to move on from this grievous state of affairs because there was so much more in store.

And having said all that, I realize that anyone else looking at these words, and possibly comparing it to the title of the song, will derive a different meaning from the song. But that's okay. That's what music is all about, eh? And how the song came into existence, based on the writer's/musician's own experiences is a separate matter altogether. But once it becomes personalized, or worse, internalized, then it's a keeper for sure. What makes me say that?...about any song, mind you. Well, listening to the song again to try and get a feel for what it was first like, I've listened to it about 30 times in the last couple of hours...ha ha ha. That's the power of music, I suppose.
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