‘Soundtrack of our lives’

“Music is the soundtrack of our lives.” – Dick Clark

I was reminded of this saying when I was listening to the recent “guest DJ” gig that Rick Springfield did for iHeart Radio. So many of these songs brought back memories.

I’m going to apologize in advance because I feel a long blog post coming on. I’ve been feeling very reflective these past few days because my mom’s yahrzeit (anniversary of her death) is next week. A year after she died, I wrote a poem/song that has a melody but no music so I’ve been working on music for it. Plus I’ve been quietly freaking out at the realization that when my birthday comes around this summer, I’ll be only five years away from the age she was when she died (from pancreatic cancer). (UPDATE from April 22: Finished the song, here it is, in case you’re curious.)

ANYWAY, back to the music.

Here is the list of songs on the “Rick Springfield Guest DJ” channel on iHeart Radio (with some of the memories that came to mind when I heard them, to indulge my reflective mood.)

Or you can just click here and listen to the radio show for yourself and disregard the text below. If you listen to it, you get to hear RS’s DJ comments, too, so I recommend it.

Light This Party Up – Rick Springfield – Rocket Science (RSRS): I’m not sure what song this whole DJ gig started on because it’s playing on a loop, so I’ll just start here in the spirit of this song being the first song on Rocket Science. Makes me remember the first time I saw it live after only seeing videos of it from other concerts.

Here Comes the Rain Again – The Eurythmics

Uptown Funk – Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars: Catchy song, always makes me want to dance. And RS’s comment about living in the ’80s cracks me up.

Down – RSRS: I was so excited to hear this song live after hearing it many times on videos other people posted.

Let’s Dance – David Bowie: “Let’s Dance” was the first David Bowie album I had and this was one of my favorite songs from the album.

Sleep Together – Porcupine Tree

Walking on Sunshine – Katrina and the Waves: During the time it was playing regularly on the radio, it was one of my favorite songs to hear. A happy song.

That One – RSRS: Got to see this live for the first time last month. You can even watch this memory! (It was less blurry in real life.)

Borderline – Madonna: This was one of Madonna’s very first songs and it makes me think of the “Madonna-wannabes” at my high school that dressed like her. The very first song I wrote in high school (song meaning a poem with a melody because none of my “songs” had music at that time) was inspired by this song. It was called “Echo, Heart Echo.”

A Day in the Life – The Beatles: When I was in my 20s and living in L.A., I took an acting class and one of the assignments was to act out a song. This is the one I chose.

Abracadabra – The Steve Miller Band: Another song that was a radio favorite – so fun to sing along to.

The Best Damn Thing – RSRS

It’s Raining Men – Weather Girls

Another Brick in the Wall – Pink Floyd

Miss Mayhem – RSRS

Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’ – Michael Jackson

Roar – Katy Perry 

The Breakup Song – Greg Kihn Band: Another radio song that I’ve always enjoyed singing along to through the years.

Pay it Forward – RSRS

Straight Up – Paula Abdul

Everybody Wants to Rule the World – Tears for Fears: Classic 80s song I always enjoy hearing.

Life in a Northern Town-Dream Academy

Concrete Heart – RSRS: My 5-year-old son’s favorite song from “Rocket Science.” It’s so cute when he randomly starts singing it.

Holiday- Madonna

Human – Human League: I like this song but the band’s song “Don’t You Want Me” was one of my favorite songs in junior high.

Jack & Diane – John Cougar Mellencamp: I remember when I first heard this song I was about 12 years old and when I heard the line “Hold on to 16 as long as you can,” 16 seemed so far off. Then when I heard it when I was 16, I thought, wow now I’m 16, cool. Now, 30 years later, it just makes me feel old. But I still like the song because it reminds me of the time when age 16 was in the future.

Crowded Solitude – RSRS

You’ve Got a Friend – James Taylor: This song stirs up so many summer camp memories, as it was one of those songs that made everyone teary-eyed on the last night of camp. Almost every time I hear it, I start thinking of my fellow counselors from those years (many who I am now “friends” with on Facebook.)

Let’s Go Crazy – Prince: One of my aunt’s – actually the one that got me my diary in 1982 that I wrote about in an earlier post – got married in a park in Long Beach, California, and I remember just about when it was time to say the vows, a guy shouted from his car, “Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to get through this thing called life!”  and I think of that every time I hear this song. Sadly, she died just a few weeks ago. Damn cancer again.

Let Me In – RSRS

Walk Like An Egyptian – The Bangles: Another ’80s song to sing along to (and do that King Tut thing with your hands).

All Hands on Deck – RSRS

Earth to Angel – RSRS

You Make My Dreams – Hall and Oates

Butterflies and Hurricanes – Muse: This was the first time I ever heard this song, but the name made me think of a poem I wrote right after our wedding – Bees and Earthquakes.

St. Elmo’s Fire – John Parr: This reminds me of the Brat Pack and all the Brat Pack movies – so much a part of the 1980s.

We Connect – RSRS

Family Snapshot – Peter Gabriel

We Got the Beat – The Gogos: Another classic ’80s song that brings me back to high school.

Found – RSRS: DJ RS shares a little more about the song and its path to what it became. One of my favorites off “Rocket Science.”

All Right Now – Free: At one time this was one of my Dad’s favorite songs and I remember him playing the song over and over again, singing along, on a long car ride.

The Church – Almost With You

Don’t Stop Believing – Journey

I think that was all of them, though I may have missed a few – not sure if new songs are sometimes added because once in awhile I hear a new one that didn’t come up in a previous listen (although I may have just gotten distracted).

I love the idea that music is something that we all share and that songs are part of our collective memory, although the specific memories may be unique. It was fun to see the songs RS picked and to hear what he had to say about them.


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