I am no longer blogging here at Little Nuances, but I would love for you to join me on my author website www.leewarren.info.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Most Popular Songs

Give Me Your EyesTechnology has a way of telling on you. I found that out yesterday when I synced my iPod and noticed I had listened to one song far more often than any other song. That made me curious enough to see what my two other most listened to songs were – here’s the list:

1. “Give Me Your Eyes” by Brandon Heath (14 plays)

Give me your arms for the broken hearted
The ones that are far beyond my reach
Give me your heart for the ones forgotten
Give me your eyes so I can see

In 1990, I lived/worked in Chicago for a few months. The company I worked for in Omaha at the time was purchased by a company in Chicago and the new company paid me a fair wage to come and teach people how to do my job.

As I walked around the city, I felt like a gnat who was lost in a swarm of gnats the size of, well, Chicago. So many people, so many stories. It was all so overwhelming. I was young and shy and had long hair with bleached tips and never really did find a way to connect. At least I had a few co-workers to hang out with at night.

I think of my Chicago years when I hear this song. I sing the lyrics as a prayer, not wanting anybody to feel as disconnected as I did.

2. “Ohio” by Over the Rhine (10 plays)

Hello Ohio 
The back roads
I know Ohio
Like the back of my hand
Alone Ohio
Where the river bends
And it’s strange to see your story end

I wrote about this song in the past. Here’s part of what I had to say about it:

This first verse is chilling to me. Karin Bergquist is singing about watching life as she knows it come to an end on the back roads of Ohio. For the record, her husband Linford Detweiler wrote the song, but the sentiment is the same. And you get the feeling she’s going to camp out and reminisce for a while because that’s what humans do when we want to make sense of change.

A picture flashes into my mind when I listen to this song – a picture I took on the back roads of Arkansas, which is where my father’s side of the family is from. As a kid, I traveled with my grandparents and sister to Arkansas most summers and we would meander down one dirt road after another visiting relatives. When I got older, I drove my grandmother down those same dirt roads.

On one of those trips, in 1993, we stopped at an old cemetery to visit the graves of family members. Before I got back into the car to leave, I snapped this photo of the dirt road that went past the cemetery.

I think I took the photo because I wanted a clear reminder about how much life, and ultimately death, existed on the back roads of my heritage. I needed the tangible proof because my mind doesn’t do an adequate job of remembering.

3. “In Color” by Jamey Johnson (8 plays)

I said, grandpa what’s this picture here
It’s all black and white, it ain’t real clear
Is that you there? He said yeah, I was 11

Times were tough back in ‘35
That’s me and uncle Joe just tryin’ to survive
A cotton farm in a great depression

If it looks like we were scared to death
Like a couple of kids just tryin’ to save each other
You should’ve seen it in color

Family heritage means more to me with each passing day. That’s why I’ve written 90 posts for this blog about the subject (click here or see the “heritage” tag on right side of the blog, under the title “Food, Family & Fun Posts”). I want the generation behind me to know the sacrifices the previous generations made.

When I hear this song, I think about my mom who was a little girl during the Depression. Clothing was hard to come by and food was even more scarce. She lacked the basics – including milk. And I think about my grandpa’s paycheck stubs from 1950. My grandparents, wanting to flee farm life, moved from Arkansas to Nebraska that year after my grandpa found work in a factory. He made 40 cents an hour.

My nieces and nephew need to know these stories. And I need to hear them again too.

How about you? What are your most listened to songs on your iPod and what are some of the stories behind the songs?


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...