Sweet Nostalgia: 5 Songs That Move Me Still | Eli @ Coach Daddy


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You’ll never run out of things to say about music. Or nostalgia.

If they haven’t written every song there is to write about love and love lost and lost love and also entire continents (Africa, by Toto) and being spun like a record (baby), well, chances are they never will.

Nostalgia has just as many flavors as does music.

I know this, because I could have compiled a five-songs post for every emotion and every emotion in the margin of every emotion. From emo to zany. Instead, I relied on the random nature of the universe (and Pandora) to deliver to me songs that moved something inside.

Here are the five that did, and the emotions (and memories, and of course, the nostalgia) they evoked when I heard them:

1. Band on the Run – Paul McCartney and Wings

There must have been something to being an uncle in the 1970s and 1980s. I had some cool ones. Uncle John and Uncle Frank in particular. They listened to Wings and Boz Scaggs and drove cool vans and peach-colored Trans-Ams and lived bachelors’ dream lives.

They were also super involved in my life. I loved that. Songs like this just harken to Fridays after school, just knowing something fun and maybe even kinda illegal was waiting in the wings. To me, my uncles were every bit as cool as Dan Aykroyd, Chevy Chase, and Bill Murray, too.

Well, the undertaker drew a heavy sigh
Seeing no one else had come
And a bell was ringing in the village square
For the rabbits on the run

2. Let It Be – The Beatles

So timeless. I remember this from those 70s and 80s days growing up. It had a spiritual feel to it, even though Mother Mary wasn’t THAT Mother Mary. I think this was the first ideas of spiritual expansion I experienced, that there was more to The Creator than I learned in catechism.

Especially in my recent awakening, this song resonates so. I’m tuning into my role as coach and inspiration source for my kids, my teams, some in my work. Hearing it recently reminded me that I can make incremental changes and that the light to do that lies within me.

And when the night is cloudy there is still a light that shines on me
Shine until tomorrow, let it be

3. Why Georgia – John Mayer

I spent my share of time on Interstate 85 in Georgia, asking myself if I was living it right. Still reeling from the loss of my father, I often left my wife and daughters in Charlotte while I drove back to Tallahassee or Greensboro to go back and work.

I wanted them to be with family, not sitting around in an apartment far from them, waiting for me to work a horrible schedule in sports journalism. It was a tough time in which I questioned everything about my existence. It would be years before things began to make sense.

So what, so I’ve got a smile on
But it’s hiding the quiet superstitions in my head
Don’t believe me
Don’t believe me
When I say I’ve got it down

4. Alive and Kicking – Simple Minds

I was 14 when this came out. Strong enough to make the football team, not good enough to star. A saxophone player and an amateur romantic. Honestly? I’d rather make a girl laugh than swoon. Some things never change. But that’s the stage in life, isn’t it?

Run track or audition for the school play or hit the gym and get decent arms and awesome legs and then get a pimple and lose the girlfriend you’ve crushed on for months in a single week. So rife with possibilities, though. It’s a lifeline that promises nothing but can deliver anything.

Who is gonna come and turn the tide?
What’s it gonna take to make a dream survive?
Who’s got the touch to calm the storm inside?
Who’s gonna save you?
Alive and kicking
Stay until your love is
Alive and kicking

5. Turn to Stone – Electric Light Orchestra

On a trip long, long ago, before the days of iAnythings in my girls’ palms, Hayden, one of my daughters heard this song on the radio. She kept an adorable journal that trip, documenting where we stopped and what we did and what she saw.

This cool song came on the radio she wrote, and I don’t even remember the context. It is a cool song, isn’t it? ELO is so unique. I can still imagine looking back and seeing her smiling face and swaying body as we rambled off to somewhere cool, all together, all happy.

The tired streets that hide away
(From here to everywhere they go)
Roll past my door into the day
In my blue world

What do you think? Have any memories associated with these songs?
How strongly does that nostalgia roar back when you hear certain songs?
* * *

Eli Pacheco @ Coach Daddy Blog

When he isn’t answering his daughters’ brilliant questions or speaking for boys everywhere, Eli Pacheco writes a blog called Coach Daddy. Connect with him on Facebook, Google Plus, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Twitter.

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20 thoughts on “Sweet Nostalgia: 5 Songs That Move Me Still | Eli @ Coach Daddy

  1. Such an honor to share these here. Music carries such a sweet nostalgia (and sometimes sour, of course) that I often can’t work with it playing, lest it carry me everywhere else.

  2. Hey Eli! Such great choices! I have always loved Let It Be, that is one of the most iconic of the Beatles songs. These others are great also. I get nostalgic when I hear anything by Simon and Garfunkel, something about their harmonies has always stirred something in me.

  3. Music can change a mood from depressed to happy. Calm a child and make everyone get up and dance. Music brings back fond memories of different times of my life that just makes me smile.

    1. It doesn’t matter how many years have passed either. Music will recreate around you the conditions and emotions you associate with it – and a magical part of that is that its as if you’re both you today and the you that existed when the music first impacted you. It’s even better when you don’t choose the song, but it wafts into your life unexpected.

  4. Soooo many memories with these songs. That John Mayer song reminds me of when I drove the east coast of Australia years ago. We were backpacking at the time but didn’t want to do hostels so we bought a cheap, beat up station wagon and drove! Every few days we went to a new camp site or trailer park and it was so much fun. It was a great way to meet the locals too. God I love old tunes 🙂

    1. Glad they spoke to you too, Yolanda. Awesome how the same song could speak to two travelers a world apart. I like your way better, though. Love when songs are stitched into an adventure especially. old tunes are the best!

    1. Music definitely can move a soul, can’t it? I’m happy you like my choices. Let It Be has a timeless quality to it … just the organ at the outset sets it up. Why Georgia Why is one of those existential songs that any of us who have driven a long road (literally and figuratively) can relate to.

    1. Hey, Thanks Lecy – glad you stopped by! Interesting that two Paul McCartney bands made the cut. John Mayer lives a life like so many of us do – but has the ability to express it in music so we can find identity in it.

  5. Oh yes the first Wings LP, Band on the Run. Its lasting legacy is that every time we go past a certain cut-price supermarket I cannot resist singing “Lidl Lidl be a gipsy get around, get your feet back on the ground, Lidl Lidl get around”. I’m not even sure any more what the original words were, or if I ever knew.

    1. Incredible that Paul made it to legendary status with two bands. Love the grocery song – I wonder what Paul would charge for the rights! Words are also open to our interpretation, exageration and manipulation if you ask me.

      1. I ‘ve had it going round my head since posting this. Had to google it. The LP was RAM, the song Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey and the lyric “Live a little …” and it was released as a single. But it is always going to be Lidl Lidl for me.

    1. “I’ll be your love suicide” – one of the best lines of modern music, Kristin. Good call!

      Tried to check out your blog but the link didn’t work … I’d love to see it.

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