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Music, That Master Manipulator

Pearl, my parrot, really loves music. He is very musical and loves to sing along with other music and make up his own! Here, he sings with the accompaniment of the shiny silver guitar his Grandma got for him.

I already know this post isn’t going to win me any new friends. No one really likes a music critic.

But as a former serious aspiring musician, singer and songwriter, it just feels like it needs to be said – somewhere, by someone – that music really should come with warning labels (or at least a healthy disclaimer or two).

A few days ago I was in one of my favorite thrift stores. I was shopping around to see what I could find that would keep me warm in the Antarctica that my normally tropical city had suddenly become.

As I browsed through gently used turtlenecks, wool sweaters and endless reams of flannel, I was at the same time listening to a steady selection of the sort of hopeless, heart-wrenching lovesick ballads I honestly haven’t heard since my own songwriting days.

Then all of a sudden, right there in the middle of the store, my heart started to hurt.

And when I say hurt, I don’t just mean my eyes began to tear up or I suddenly wondered if I had forgotten to take my anti-depressant that morning. I mean it actually started to HURT. I felt physical pain in the general vicinity of my upper left chest, right in between my left collar bone and my left boob – and we all know which vital organ makes its home there.

If you’ve ever stuck a power cord in an electrical outlet and see a brief spark of electricity fly out, that is about how it felt. My heart was ping! ping! pinging! these little sparks along with the beats of the songs. 

4 thoughts on “Music, That Master Manipulator

  • December 4, 2018 at 6:20 pm

    Yes music can make you happy and incredibly sad. Pink Floyd is my all time fave. band. One of the band members has mental illness and they have several songs that they sing about like Comfortably Numb and Dark Side of the Moon. They have a long version of Dark Side in 1973 that is fantastic. Also like Moody Blues ( that shows my age!) Coldplay, PearlJam, Crash Test Dummies, and Elton John is good.

    • December 4, 2018 at 6:26 pm

      I love how diverse your playlist is!

  • December 5, 2018 at 3:11 am

    I love a wide variety of music and I remember as a young teen, a friend commented that listening to my music was as good as a popular local radio station at the time. I was hugely flattered lol!
    I don’t care for rap music or heavy metal for the most part but I like everything from: Uncle Kracker, Pat Benatar, Linda Ronstadt, Rod Stewart, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Tina Turner, Queen, Foreigner, Elton John, Coldplay, Faith Hill, the soundtracks from Grease, Dirty Dancing, Rent, Godspell etc., gospel and contemporary Christian such as by Natalie Grant, Mandisa, Laura Story. I like Ed Sheeran, Laura Branigan, Heart, Chuck Berry, Indigo Girls, Annie Lennox, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts etc.
    I love how certain songs can remind me of where I was and what I was doing at that time in my life–but as you point out, there are some places you’d rather not go!

    • December 5, 2018 at 11:06 am

      Well that is very cool! Sounds like you could have had a budding career as a D.J.! 🙂


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