A couple of weeks ago my mom and I were driving home from lunch. We were in my new car and my sunroof was open despite the sweltering heat outside. It was one of those picture perfect afternoons though. I remember Eric Church’s song Springsteen was on the radio and I couldn’t stop smiling about the track my life was on. I turned the music up too loud and reached up and put my hand out of the sunroof. My mom asked me what I was doing (I must have looked like I wasn’t paying attention to the road), but all I could say was “I’m just living life, Mom. What are you doing?”
I know that sounds like a super cheesy thing to say, but it was the most honest thing I could have said in that moment. The other day my mom texted me saying she was “living life”…her and my dad had their hands out of the sunroof. She finally understood what I meant.
I just watched the music video for Springsteen and had to smile when I saw that it features people riding with the top down and their hands out the window. It’s always really cool to realize you interpreted a song in exactly the right way. But, honestly, that’s not really my favorite part about the song. My favorite part is that it puts into words what I love about music in general. That a single song can take you back in time to a moment in your life just as though you were living it all over again. Everyone has a list of songs that takes them back (see Summer Love); I happen to have an entire playlist. But the really amazing thing about it is that you get to constantly add new songs to the list. That a song can come on the radio and make you cry, laugh, remember, forget…The lyrics to a song can make you appreciate an ordinary moment like driving home from lunch; the melody can make you forget you’re in a crowded room. Sometimes you might swear a song was written about someone you know; sometimes you might swear it was written about your life. But mostly a great song can just make you appreciate a moment, and then remember that moment every time you hear the first few chords for the rest of your life.