Pandora brought me back to someone that loved being. I can’t believe I am saying this. I am definitely not getting paid to speak good about Pandora. Although I did have a very real moment on a drive to Home Depot this past weekend.
I woke up at the crack of 10 in the morning. My father had been asking me if I would try and fix the garbage disposal in his house. I decided to take a stab at it and realized I needed an entirely new disposal system if we were going to fix anything. I spent the previous evening watching youtube videos and shoving a broom handle into the disposal system. No luck. So when I woke up I grabbed the key and left. I was determined to fix something because I have had no luck trying to fix parts of me I want to replace.
Lately I have taken a liking to driving my old mans fancy Chevy Malibu with the windows down and cranking Miles Davis on Pandora. But on this day I really wanted to play Modest Mouse without using up all of my phones data on youtube. Pandora is always a seemingly last resort.
I jammed out to a couple of depressing songs because that’s what a broken-hearted UPS delivery, garbage disposal fixing, red headed dude is supposed to do at 11 in the morning. Pandora took the expected turn and started playing bands that I never associate with the original artist I picked. The Pixies started playing (Who are amazing live), The Violent Femmes, and then The White Stripes. The White Stripes are what hit me at my core.
We all have a band that reminds us of a way we used to be, how we used to feel, and the friends that we were always surrounded by. I was genuinely happy and full of life when I was obsessed with this duo. Sure, they have a couple of mediocre songs that everyone knows but when you dig deep into The White Stripes they’ve got soul and they fucking rock!
The Fall of 2009 while living in my closet-sized first apartment is where they brought me. I was living next door to my best friend and skating everyday with a crew of people from my hometown. I was going for what I loved. I was teaching myself piano, writing poetry, dreaming of hitch-hiking, working two pizza delivery jobs, and living 10 blocks from my loving Grandparents and Uncle Leo. (If you watch Seinfeld you will respect this reference.) Not to mention all of my friends skateboarded so we always had something to do.
I was happier than I had ever been in my life. I was living and learning with great people all around me. I made it a point to smile as much as I could because I noticed how many people kept their face sedentary and vacant. I didn’t want to be a part of that life. I was actively learning to love all that was happening around me, even if it was dismal and seemingly hopeless. My heart had been broken by young love twice in one year and I wasn’t going to fall for it again. I knew I was strong in my spirit.
Somewhere between then and now I lost that valor that I had worked so hard to achieve. I let my failures and lessons bring me down and I am now remembering that the right song can change my perspective.
I love my depressing music more than anything. Sometimes I crave the meanest metal I can find. I want to hear the most heart crushing solo acoustic music at all times of day or night. I don’t leave much hope for soul and rock and roll in my day to day basis. That’s where I have been lacking lately.
My discovery this week is that when there is nothing seemingly left, there is always music out there. Let that music embody who you want to be. Let it create that fire inside of you that a person once filled. Let it be the boat that brings you back home to who you are. It isn’t going to leave any time soon and you will always have more to discover and learn from it.
Of course listen to the sad songs, but never forget the rock and roll that lets you live life with intent and with more passion while everything around you seems like it’s falling apart and breaking down. I am letting myself get back to being who I was and creating who I want to be with the support of 3 minute songs. Especially when I have nowhere else to turn. This life is hard. Music gives us a chance at fighting back. Mine was, “Girl, you have no faith in medicine,” by The White Stripes.
As always, I appreciate you reading Depressive Dusty and this time with a little bit of hope for us.