The downside of Pandora Radio……

First, don’t get me wrong, I LOVE Pandora Radio. Last October, I took an assignment from LL Bean which morphed into a second assignment that ends today. As much as I love the environment and the people at Bean, I’m ready for it to be over until, maybe, next fall. One thing I enjoyed the most (along with NPR on the ride home at 11 PM….New Yorker Magazine, Ted Talks, Moth Radio Hour) was that I could listen to Pandora the whole time I was working.

So, what downside could there be to listening to Pandora? My assignments at Bean only required me to think at a level hardly beyond idle speed so I had a lot of available RAM in my head. Let’s face it, if you live long enough, there is music that defines points in your life. It connects you forever with certain people. It inspires you to activity and change. It becomes part of your personal DNA.

One song that is part of my DNA, that moves me every time I hear it (actually heard it on a trip to the Limerick Market yesterday) is Bob Seger’s Against The Wind. While it is not necessarily auto biographical, a couple of lines hit me right between the eyes ever time I hear them and that whack grows stronger each time. “Seems like yesterday, but it was long ago………”. I relate to that line in many ways but the most powerful connection is with one specific person and that connection to a different time will never change. Later in the song, the line, “I wish I didn’t know now what I didn’t know then…….” is not specific to any person but rather a reminder of times when you had a full account of “next years”. Far fewer cares and worries. Totally oblivious to the reality that, at some point, you run out of next years.

My intention in creating what will have to be multiple posts that relate to songs is to question what will be the legacy of my generation, the Baby Boomer Generation. Some songs absolutely require their own post and one, in particular, that I heard the other night at work had tears running down my face, as it always does, in three notes.

If you read this string of posts you’ll at least get to hear a great song. Today, as a follow up to my last post regarding racism, a bonus song from one of my all time favorites, Sam Cooke.

4 thoughts on “The downside of Pandora Radio……”

  1. Well now that is a powerful song with great video clips which definitely continues the question of how far we have come and get how far we need to travel to reach the “dream”. Personally, I don’t think we will ever in our lifetime witness the end of racism. Not enough dialogue, education, leadership in our present society and I don’t think people truly listen to one another. Now, songs that pop into my peabrain…Fortunate Son, 4 dead in Ohio, and Sound of Silence….what stronger lyrics applicable to today’s bizzaro world than “people talking without speaking, people hearing without listening”… And the people bowed and prayed to the neon God they made.” I think of the media with its often mindless 2 4 hour reporting, pontificating, projecting “what ifs”, our leaders spouting nonsense and sheer mind numbing gobbledygook; it is enough to make you weep or shout in frustration. Tons of other songs make you appreciate the artistic insight of this medium….how listening to one quickly brings the memories, dreams, hopes, fears just roaring back to often bring you to tears, joy or to your knees. Unknown Soldier by the Doors, What’s going on by Marvin Gaye and Green Day with American Idiot. What I first notice about these songs as they don’t resort to gimmicky use of the f bomb, other foul language. Instead they use the power of solid, meaningful lyrics to present compelling arguments that are still pertinent. That’s what makes them memorable and resisting to time.

    1. You have hit upon a couple of songs for future posts. One thing I’ve realized is what a genius Bob Dylan has been, still is, and his ability to paint pictures with words, to illustrate the world around us, to inspire, is really unparalleled.

  2. Hi Herb,
    As usual this was a very thought provoke piece. For whatever reason, perhaps because of my partial hearing loss, I’ve never really “learned” or perhaps “internalized” the words or meanings of many of the songs of our era. . . long era in that regard. Not many around today predate the Beatles.

    Anyway, I enjoyed listening to the lyrics in the links you posted and from now on will try to put more meaning to the songs, relationship to life and likely value of the messages shared in the awesome music from the various times in our life. Thank goodness for hearing aides, the internet to get the lyrics and your nudge to pay attention to the world around me. BTW . . .we both have LOTS of livin’ to do yet. Carol has revived my life over the past 5+ years and plannin many, many more happy years.

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