The Songs That Built us

Back to the gypsy that I was

Lucy Harbron – Gypsy by Fleetwood Mac

Good mood, bad mood, raining, summer, 5am, 2pm. No matter what I can never skip this song. Even if I’m in the worst mood ever the intro to gypsy always breaks through my hard exterior and within 4 minutes I’ve got from crying on the floor, to twirling round in my room and feeling like a free spirit dancing through a field. Maybe it’s the pure beauty of Stevie Nicks? Or maybe it’s magic of the 70s? But that song always cheers me up.  Stevie described Gyspy as a song about returning to herself and I LOVE THAT. I see Stevie Nicks as my spiritual mother (weird I know ), after watching many many Fleetwood mac documentaries and extensively reading her Wikipedia page I decided that Stevie Nicks is a total hero and an incredible woman who taught me that expressing your feelings into art and spinning around to a good song will improve your state of mind by at least 80%. There was a time when I couldn’t listen to Fleetwood mac as a past relationship left a lot of bad memories attached, but slowly I managed to reclaim my fave band and from that day on I have really struggled to listen to anything other than Fleetwood.

To me, Gypsy is like a victory anthem. It’s a song that celebrates finding a home in yourself and the knowledge that that home will always be there. Each time I listen to gypsy, or really any Fleetwood mac song, I feel proud, I feel happy, I feel strong. Managing to reclaim my favourite band was like reclaiming myself and now here I am, singing my heart out and spinning round carelessly. Listening to gypsy reminds me of 3 vital facts-

  1. You can always reclaim yourself
  2. You can always return to your true self
  3. Spinning round in floaty clothes will always make things better, no matter how bad things get.daisy - Copy

 

Oh no, stranger you’re just like me, these things happen, we were children in the mid 90’s

Rachelle Cox – We Were Children by Tribes

If you asked me “what’s your favourite song” you’d get a different answer every time; I’m so indecisive and my tastes and interests are constantly changing. I can’t possibly chose just a single song that is my ultimate favourite because I’ve grown up with such diverse but great music, it all speaks to me on an emotional and spiritual level (especially you, Kate Bush) so deciding one just one is offensive to all of the other great songs I love. So I decided to choose a song that represents me at my current stage in life; a free-spirited young gal who just likes to get on with life and have fun. The temptation not to pick a song from the Grease or Hairspray soundtracks was pretty unbearable but the song I’ve chosen is Tribes We Were Children.  Tribes are one of my favourite bands and they are hella rad. This was the first ever Tribes song I listened to as I saw them live at the NME awards back in 2012 and fell in love instantly. I was going to choose another Tribes song called How The Other Half Live as it has such a good meaning to the song and the intro is possibly one of my faves, but We Were Children has more sentimental value to me. It represents how in life you are going to regret a lot of stupid things you did when you were young but that shapes who you are and how your life turns out so you shouldn’t worry about it, you should live your days care-free and just be happy, and I like that idea. It’s simple. It’s do-able. The song’s vibes just makes me wanna dance in the streets and every time it comes on shuffle I gotta jam.  I can honestly say it’s up there with my all-time faves and for this month it’s what I chose to be my favourite song.

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Private Eyes *clap* They’re watching you *clap clap*

Grace Thambyrajah – Private Eyes by Hall & Oates

I would call it a guilty pleasure but I ain’t even sorry. If I had chosen any other song as the dearest in my library I would have been lying to myself. What is one of the few songs I never skip on shuffle is the pure 80’s pop glory of John Hall and Daryl Oates. Is it the keyboard phrasing or the drum beat devoid of skill, I don’t know but it is most certainly the chorus clapping that puts Private Eyes on every single party playlist I comply, as anyone who knows me (and is therefore sick of this song) has realised. If you’re wondering what it looks like to completely embrace the magic, as I often do (again sorry friends) it’s a lot like this:

 

With a couple kooks hung up on romancing

Eliza Caraher – Kooks by David Bowie

I’m terrible at picking my favourite anything; I change my mind every other day. But, if I had to pick a song, one of my personal favourite songs that summed me up best, it would have to be David Bowie’s ‘Kooks.’ There are a hundred and one reasons this song means so much to me (even besides Bowie being one of the greatest artists of all time) but it seems most fitting to start with when this song first entered my life; Kooks was my lullaby. It was the song my mum sang to me as a child when I was struggling to sleep. Later it went on to be symbolic of the childhood I had, one with my very unconventional but free-spirited and wonderful parents who raised me with the ideals the song portrays regarding not caring about what others think of me or letting ultimately meaningless things such as school or work upset me. As I grew up in a house full of such quirky, brilliant people and objects and I have been shaped into the person I am now, a person who is often described as ‘quirky’ or ‘kooky’ by those around me, aspiring to be comfortable and myself no matter how unconventional that may be.

Kooks’ provides a set of wonderful lyrics that manage to sum up my life so far and hopefully my life to come as equally carefree and content with what I have.

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 Really want to see you Lord, But it takes so long, my Lord

Daisy-Chain Scott – My Sweet Lord by George Harrison

My Sweet Lord” by George Harrison is the first track that I have ever had a colossal attachment to – not just in the sense that; “Wow, I could listen to this song forever” but “Uh, this track means a whole lot to me”.

Brought home for my first Christmas with a record player, the small single was £1 in a charity shop without a single scratch and a green apple misplaced in the middle – played on a record player it was worth all the money in the world.

This song is so much more than just a song, George Harrison had written this in the 70’s after his change in faith – through the public eye. Harrison wrote “My Sweet Lord” in praise of the Hindu god Krishna, while at the same time intending the lyrics to serve as a call to abandon religious sectarianism through his deliberate blending of the Hebrew word hallelujah with chants of “Hare Krishna” and Vedic prayer. I myself, am not religious but the song show how much passion Harrison has towards his faith – proving to me that it must be something that comes from the soul.

It isn’t a track that screams “religion” in your face, if you forget about the religious implications it could be a song about love for friendship or life – think back to “Something” and you’re moving along the same lines.

It will be the track that sends shivers down my spine, the track that will remind me of my first love of a scratching of the record player, the mumble and hiss of the first touch of the needle, the way you can hear passion through the voice of Harrison, the endless hours I spent trying to recreate the track on the guitar in a shed and ultimately the first feeling of having an ultimate connection to a song.

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Found myself alone alone alone above a raging sea, it stole the only girl I loved, drowned her deep inside of me

Jonathan Whyatt – Just Like Heaven by The Cure

From the first drumbeat, this song makes me feel like no song has ever done before. Memories of people and places from one particular time in my life are locked so preciously within it, and are exposed beautifully by Robert Plant’s hauntingly honest voice, so much so that whenever I hear it I have to stop whatever it is I am doing, close my eyes and just listen, fully appreciating every note and lyric as if it were meant for my ears only. To do anything else would be totally inept.

As his lyric echoes ‘you’re just like a dream’, I always thought if it was possible to live within the notes of a song, climbing and clambering over each other, as the fragile piano notes flicker, I would want to exist in that moment. Endless and eternal; it makes you forget all that is wrong and just live for the beautiful moment that the song creates. It’s an audio interpretation of perfection, a place where you can feel as though everything will be ok once again. No other song comes close to it for me. The emotions, the hope. This song gives reason to live and reason to continue.

One day, maybe a long time from now, perhaps a Friday evening in a place far away from here surrounded by bright lights and dancing, ‘Just Like Heaven’ will play and I’ll finally find the words to describe how this song makes me feel.

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Now everybody’s dead

Lauren Aitken – Robbers by The 1975

I’ve been a huge fan of  The 1975 for just under a year now, and their song Robbers is the most perfectly written and composed sequence of sound waves ever to grace my ears. Okay, where to begin. Well, firstly, Robbers introduced me to my all-time favourite film, True Romance, featuring my second favourite sound which is Patricia Arquette’s adorably infectious laugh. The song is kind of loosely based on the movie, and they complement each other brilliantly (the True Romance theme is also amazing and my ringtone and has officially been ruined by supermarkets making it the background music to their adverts). I love the vibes this song gives out as well  – depending on what mood you’re in, it makes you feel angry, happy, chilled, sad, euphoric, that feeling when you stare out of the car window when you’re on a journey and pretend you’re in a music video etc. It’s just one of those really powerful pieces of music you can never skip ‘cause they just give you major “feels”. You know those rare songs that feel like the whole track is one big journey? Yeah, well that’s Robbers.

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As long as I gaze on Waterloo sunset I am in paradise

Bridie – Waterloo Sunset by The Kinks

Waterloo Sunset says “I adore you and nothing else on this planet matters because of that”. The adored may be another heart, or it may be the world around you. The melody, much like a Wes Anderson, divinely rosy from beginning to end. Three minutes and sixteen seconds of utter contentment.

I don’t think this is the sort of song that you listen to and experience a sudden understanding of what love is, because no one ever has the same love twice and no two people will ever love in the same way. There is, instead, an unspoken yet very clear explanation of how you’ll feel once you’ve found it in every line. If there was ever a song that encapsulates how extraordinary and beautiful the most ordinary love is, “Waterloo Sunset is fine”.

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Life on the other hand won’t make you understand

Patrick Whyte – The Masterplan by Oasis

When asked to choose a favourite song for this article I did the whole stereotypical “I love music too much to have a favourite song” but after some thought I realised that I tend to go through phases where I love, and ridiculously overplay, particular songs. This month it’s a classic oasis tune and last month it was a Richard Hawley cover by The Maccabees.

I took a liking to ‘The Masterplan’ when I was in my friend’s car. We were driving to the beach on a sunny afternoon and the song came on and I just fell in love it, I’d heard it before but this time it gripped me. The beginning that seems like it’s going to be a dark and depressing song, leading to the chorus that is so uplifting you kick yourself that you don’t know the words because all you want to do is scream out every syllable. All of it leading to the calm finish where you can hear Noel in the background quoting a lyric from ‘Octopus’ Garden’, a fantastic late Beatles track. Pure perfection and possibly my new found favourite oasis song. I come across songs very rarely that I can safely say I will never get sick of and this, though I can’t confirm it’s my all-time favourite, is definitely one.

Listen to the songs that built us-