Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Summer Reflections Playlist

I was thinking today about a few songs that seem to speak to me about this summer, and a few kept coming into my head. Once I started putting together a playlist I realized it was all coming together more natural that I had thought, I was able to essentially break this summer into three songs for three separate moods and events from each month, with really little meditation at all, these just made the most sense.

Press play and read about each song below and the memories from this summer that influenced me to pick each one.

Saves The Day - A Drag in D Flat
Summer kicked itself off with me listening to Saves The Day's Bug Session EP collection, which feature acoustic or stripped down versions their songs (however, the version in this playlist is the full band version). Something about the muted electric guitars in this version of A Drag in D Flat really stands out for me. I also like how well the last verse "I am not afraid of what it takes to glue you to my side, if it takes a little bleeding, So be it. I will go without breathing, don't have to justify it. Can't just watch me, I've got time to kill" comes across in this version. On our Fourth of July weekend trip to Seattle, which was literally only two days worth of a whirlwind of attractions and seafood, I think I listened to this song about 3 times on the flight back to Phoenix. The moment that comes to mind in particular, is listening to this song on the return flight, and watching the snow capped mountains outside the window gradually give way to the dry brown high plains. This was the soundtrack to my 36,000 ft roadway tracing until we climbed above cloud cover and the sun finally set, closing the chapter on our first very brief summer adventure.

Jack's Mannequin - Holiday From Real
If this isn't the perfect song for summer I don't know what is. I had heard this song earlier and put it on my "On To morning Stars" iPod playlist which I constructed specifically for trips to San Diego. Right as we hit Yuma (and my co-pilot woke up :) ), this song started up, right on time. Andrew McMahon of Jack's Mannequin is a terrific pop song writer and his lyrics in this tune perfectly describe what was one of the best vacations I had in a long time. We spent a week in San Diego, putzing around the surrounding California attractions. We stayed at a friend's apartment (who was away with family on vacation themselves) with limited internet access and no TV. This helped us disconnect a lot more and just take in the full California experience of not needing to do anything or go anywhere but whatever struck our fancy at the time. We had what felt like no worries for an entire week, and it felt amazing. This song reminds me of those few relaxing days: long afternoons of doing nothing, midnight donut runs while watching Buffy episodes, and polishing off drinks in the middle of the day just because I could. Fuck yeah we can live like this.

Bon Iver - Beth/Rest
This song kind of overlaps with the last one. On the first leg of our San Diego excursion, we took a trip to the beach. I used the free time to listen to the new Bon Iver record, "Bon Iver, Bon Iver" from start to finish. After zoning in and out of the soothing sounds of the album, this song was a bit of a wake up call, just because it sounded so unique and different from the rest of the tone of the album. Something about the layered melodies of the keyboard, sax and guitar just sounded so perfect, and it felt like it matched my exact mood at the time. Ever since then, when I would go back and listen to it,  it became a theme for the entire summer, a conglomeration of soothing sights, sounds, feelings, people and experiences, all working together in beautiful harmony, the kind of song that just takes your breath away. In mid September my girlfriend, our roommate (and very good friend), and I, all went to see Bon Iver live in what was an excellent mind blowing performance, and this was the second to last song they played. Something about that moment seemed fitting .Here I was with two of my favorite people who I shared many of these summer memories with, and here was the song that spoke in music how my soul felt at one of it's most calmest moments.

Looking back, this was a long, if not damn good summer, full of some really great memories I will never forget. I feel very lucky to have had lived it, and shared some of these special moments with the people I love.

our love is a star
sure some hazardry
for the light before and after most indefinitely