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On Music and Keeping "this love in a photograph"


posted by Susan Dominikovich on , , , , , , ,

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We keep this love in a photograph
We made these memories for ourselves
Where our eyes are never closing
Hearts are never broken
And times are forever frozen still -- Ed Sheeran "Photograph"



When it started to become clear that our man-child was sicker than just a little bit sick and that I might quite possibly need to be prepared to spend more time with him at home rather than working, I realised I was missing something.

Music was missing from our house.  And I needed music more than anything.

We had moved into our flat in January and setting up the stereo was something we just never got around to.  It was out, on the floor, but not set up and unplayable. Besides which, our stereo is barely 21st century technology.  I suspect it isn't.  I suspect its a decent still-working relic of the 90's.  Speakers and speaker wire, volume knob, equaliser, 5-disc CD carousel and...wait for it...a tape deck.  An actual bona fide tape deck.  

Looking back I realise that music has always been part of my life.  I grew up listening to my parents' Abba and Boney M vinyl records. When my dad was particularly nostalgic it was Scottish bagpipes bouncing off the ceiling, or one of the crooners and Doris Day. My mother took me to classical concerts where I first learnt of the power of music and how much it can evoke an emotional response. I played the piano and the clarinet and sang in choirs all through my youth.  At university my favourite paper was tracking music and literature together through history. I still play the piano. I still sing (the clarinet is long-retired). Music is more than just a part of my life; it is embedded in it.

My husband also grew up with the radio playing in his house.  He was raised to the tune of Radio Sport New Zealand.  

So I realised that if music was to be re-introduced in our house, it was going to be up to me.

I looked at that silver and orange piece of still-working-but-not-set-up 90's retro technology and I made a decision. I bought a perfectly good retro table, painted it, placed it in exactly the right spot by a power outlet and voila!  The stereo had a home and was set up and working again within a day or two.

I fondly reacquainted myself with Ken and Anna from More FM when I tuned in my favourite station (okay truthfully we had never lost touch since I am with them every morning in my little Honda Fit and just ask me to turn down the volume and you'll get "the look.") However, while the 5 disc CD carousel worked perfectly well (we won't talk about the tape deck) I realised my CD collection was...sad.  To put it rather kindly. Where was Lorde? Coldplay? Hozier? Nickelback (one for the Canadians)? Sam Smith? Oh how sad.

So Google and I had a date.  Since we were building a new house, I decided to research just what exactly this Gen X family needed to do to get set up with music again. We needed to get with the programme. We needed to get up to date. We needed to modernise. 

During my Google date there was a fair bit of furrowing my brow at the options ahead of us. I suddenly had deep respect for the elderly who have embraced cell phones.  I understand!

Thankfully, with my skills in "keeping it simple (stupid!)" I discovered that one portable speaker system with blue tooth was all I needed.  I quickly narrowed down exactly which one would suit us best, found it on sale, heard a demo in the shop (thus discovering Pandora Radio but pretending I knew about it all along) and came home with my Marley speaker.  

The Marley is now my best friend and I'm rather fond of Pandora too. In fact, more than once I have asked them both where they've been all my life. Ed Sheeran is my station and if you don't believe me, you'll have to try it for yourself because when I say the song selection is exactly right, I am speaking Truth.  Seriously. Every time.

Music now plays constantly in our house. Well, not quite.  The man-child seems to have inherited his grandparents' "appreciation" for music (from his father's side). Actually, in his case, it's more of a phobia but I'm working on that.  But since he's asleep A LOT, music now plays almost constantly in our house.

As a music lover, it is always the music I hear first: the tune, the melody, the harmonies, the cadence, the instruments working together, the rhythm.  The lyrics are always secondary to me.  I've been known to sing along to songs without having a clue as to what I'm actually singing.  Must remember to work on that now that the kiddeos are actually listening to the music I am singing.

So the Marley and Pandora conspired to greet me with a song the other day.  It was an Ed Sheeran song that I hadn't heard before.  Ed Sheeran is almost always perfect all of the time (who didn't sit through the credits of The Desolation of Smaug to listen to "I See Fire," tears streaming?!?), but I knew deep down that this song was something else.  It was just the tune at first and those drums! I loved it instantly but the next time I heard it I listened more carefully to the words to see how well lyrics and music worked together.  I have to tell you, a lump caught in my throat.  They worked well.  So well.

Then I went to Youtube to find the official video.  And settled in with a whole box of tissues.

It's a perfect song. Perfect lyrics. Perfect video. For me, for now, for the man-child.  And this is why I love music and why it is embedded in me; music speaks the words I can't.

"Photograph", by Ed Sheeran (lyrics to follow).


"Photograph"

Loving can hurt
Loving can hurt sometimes
But it's the only thing
That I know

And when it gets hard
You know it can get hard sometimes
It is the only thing that makes us feel alive

We keep this love in a photograph
We made these memories for ourselves
Where our eyes are never closing
Hearts are never broken
And times are forever frozen still

So you can keep me
Inside the pocket
Of your ripped jeans
Holdin' me closer
Til our eyes meet
You won't ever be alone
Wait for me to come home

Loving can heal
Loving can mend your soul
And is the only thing
That I know (know)
I swear it will get easier
Remember that with every piece of ya
And it's the only thing we take with us when we die

We keep this love in a photograph
We make these memories for ourselves
Where our eyes are never closing
Our hearts were never broken
And times forever frozen still
So you can keep me
Inside the pocket
Of your ripped jeans
Holdin' me closer
Till our eyes meet
You won't ever be alone

And if you hurt me
Well that's ok baby only words bleed
Inside these pages you just hold me
And I won't ever let you go

Wait for me to come home
Wait for me to come home
Wait for me to come home
Wait for me to come home

Oh you can fit me
Inside the necklace you got when you were 16
Next to your heartbeat
Where I should be
Keep it deep within your soul

And if you hurt me
Well that's ok baby only words bleed
Inside these pages you just hold me
And I won't ever let you go

When I'm away
I will remember how you kissed me
Under the lamppost
Back on 6th street
Hearing you whisper through the phone
Wait for me to come home

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