When a song lyric hits the spot

Observations of a Middle-Aged Dragon with a Tattoo:

When a song lyric just hits the spot.

Don’t you love it when a song comes on the radio or on your device and because you’ve got it on shuffle, it’s a pleasant, inspiring surprise.

At first this week’s blog was going to be about how amazing the lyrics of older songs were. How they caught the imagination and stirred the soul. My mind kept raising the question that maybe with the advent of iTunes, Spotify etc.; imaginative, telling a full story and soul-stirring lyrics could be history. Then again, let’s face it some record labels have always churned out songs like sausage meat. Now I think even faster turnover is required, and yeah probably the quality of the art of song writing overall has diminished under the pressure for quantity. However, while I think the days of the 5 minute or longer song is over. There are still some, clever, emotion evoking new songs out there.

However, there’s nothing like an older song that brings back memories of when we were younger and dare I say it, more carefree.

So here are some songs that deserve an unearthing and a re-listen. Some you’ll have to dig way down for and some not so much but all worth it:

Anything from Mark Knoffler and Dire Straits: 

No not necessarily, songs from the album Brother’s in Arms (which everyone seems to carry-on about). They’re good but don’t forget the landmark Love over Gold (a 5 song album) oh the shock of it! Amazing story-telling songs though.

My REAL love-affair is with Making Movies, the whole album is briliant particularly Expresso Love: you know it:

She gets the sun in the daytime
Perfume in the dusk
And she comes out in the night time
With the honeysuckle musk
Because she smells just like a rose
And she tastes just like a peach
She got me walking where the wildlife goes
I’d do anything to reach her

How beautiful are those lyrics, and BAM! You’re right there smelling the honeysuckle musk. Gets me every time.

Then there’s Meatloaf and the wonders of Jim Steinman’s lyrics.

So many to choose from. Some say the lyrics are a little cheesy I say no way especially when delivered with Meatloaf’s powerhouse voice. They struck a chord with a generation and still do. Now given the right timing they bust you open and make you feel like you’re right there, sinking deeper and deeper into the chilly California sand and there you are in the middle of For Crying Out Loud.. Take a listen right here to the full 8.55 mins of the mini pop opera and then let the goosebumps roll.

And the now chilly California wind
Is blowing down our bodies again
And we’re sinking deeper and deeper into the chilly California sand
Oh I know you belong inside my aching heart
And can’t you see my faded Levis bursting apart
And don’t you hear me crying 
Oh babe, don’t go
And don’t you hear me screaming

How was I to know?

There are so many, many more. SO now I’m going for left field; or a man whose softer songs were such a turn off to his diehard fans that some of them bought the singles (you know those black vinyl things, bigger than a CD but smaller than vinyl EPs, those black things the size of a dinner plate). Anyway they bought them just so they could burn them. However, with time the song has grown to be seen as one of his best. I’m writing about Alice Cooper’s… You and Me. Because as the song says; What we are is what we are

When I get home from work,
I wanna wrap myself around you.
I wanna take you and squeeze you
till the passion starts to rise.
I wanna take you to heaven.
That would make my day complete. 
But you and me ain’t no movie stars.
What we are is what we are.
We share a bed,
some lovin’,
and tv, yeah.

The one song that reminded me there are some amazing recent evocative songs out there was Rhianna’s Cheers ‘Drink to That’, or as everyone knows it: Here’s to the Freakin’ Weekend. It is different to those above in its message, but the power of its mood lifting and the emotions stirred is similar.

What more need be said:

Cheers to the freakin’ weekend
I drink to that, yeah yeah
Oh let the Jameson sink in
I drink to that, yeah yeah
Don’t let the bastards get ya down
Turn it around with another round

Dare you to….