For a long time the whole ‘music is the soundtrack to our lives’ schtick has bugged me. For me that makes music far too passive a thing, just an accessory, like a handbag or a jacket. That doesn’t work for me. Music is core, it is being. Music is shape and time.
And it doesn’t stay outside, lurking on the foot tapping periphery of the body. Music, when I let it, will set the tone and sometimes I need it to set the tone. I need it to reach up and find the joy and sometimes I need it to point me into the valley, down low.
Today I knew when I got up what I needed to listen to, I knew what was required. I couldn’t name the artist or an album but I heard a certain hum and I sought it. All through breakfast and boudoir time I leaned toward the unheard tone.
And then as Beargirl was brushing her hair and as I was finding the keys I heard the words: ain’t gone study war no more. I ricocheted toward the cd stack and scratched my head. I knew that Tupelo Honey was somewhere but the shift to iTunes has turned my precise organization into a dodgy treasure map.
There it is! Nestled into Dr Sternlove’s collection, part gift part storage device. And it hit the spot. Van Morrison’s Tupelo Honey is simply the most joyous album, it is the sound of a happy man. When I heard that tone I was open and I let it make shape and time.
Tupelo Honey sets a tone that allows the romance of being alive to sit uncomplicatedly beside the tethered labours of responsibility. The possibility was one I had mislaid recently.