Monday, September 1, 2008

Song for a Crappy Tuesday

A few years ago there was a segment on NPR's All Things Considered, in which they discussed why people tend to listen to sad songs when they are sad, rather than happy songs. My memory of the actual broadcast is dim, but the truth of it stayed with me. When I'm in the dumps, I really don't feel much like "I'm Walking on Sunshine". Whoever that person is that might be walking on sunshine, I want to trip them and throw dirt clods, and rat their hair.



So, since Tuesday is a crappy day anyway, I thought I'd share a song to help us all get through it- whether you be wallowing in self pity, yelping to providence over your situation, or simply annoyed that Rhonda in the next cubicle is, quite loudly and with much wet smacking, eating a peanut butter sandwich. (Shudder)

Tom waits has been on my favorite list for years. In college, my friends and I would get some beer, play cards (a complicated card game that I will not go in to here), and listen to Tom Waits on our little $15 CD player which we referred to with much affection as the Storm Trooper (Its white shell and wide speakers on either side gave it the anonymous look of the Imperial Soldiers).

I think the first album I purchased of Waits was Small Change.

Over the years, Tom Waits has been a constant through my ups and downs, and though I have become a less frequent listener, I have never lost my attachment. I wouldn't categorize his music as "sad" so much as thoughtful. The man knows how to turn a phrase and tell a story.

Here is a song that has long been a favorite of mine off of Bone Machine (an album which the universe has conspired to keep me from owning. Every time I obtain a copy, it is stolen, destroyed, or lent but not returned. This is true of a few other albums as well, most notably The Sunday's Reading, Writing and Arithmetic and Peter Gabriel's So. I do, however, own two copies of Madonna's Immaculate Collection, neither of which I recall purchasing.). "Who Are You?" is a blues catch-all. I have listened to this and directed my frustrated thoughts at someone else, other times, it sounds like it's talking directly to me. In the book on crisis and depression etiquette, "Who Are You?" is appropriate for any level of emotional disquiet.

Here's hoping your Tuesday isn't a total load of desolate suck.

If you have any suggestions for artists or songs...please feel free to make them. I'm always interested in different music. For those of you who are new to Tom Waits and would like to hear more, I'd start with Closing Time. It's his first, and probably my favorite.

1 comment:

Dennis Frymire said...

When I went through my divorce a couple of years ago, I listened to Gary Allan's "Tough All Over" CD, which he recorded in the wake of his wife's suicide, over and over again. Tracks 2 and 5 were my particular, um, favorites, if you can call those things that rip your heart out 'favorites'.

Add to Technorati Favorites