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Hit repeat on that old school jam.


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There are movies and songs that I like and consider my favorites just like everyone else. My taste in movies and music is partially built on the memories attached to them but that’s probably not much different from other people either. Watching a movie or listening to a song always takes my mind to events of my childhood or even recent years where I find myself thinking about events in my life during that time. I’ve noticed that the songs I like most are attached to good memories but that’s not surprising, who want’s to listen to a song that makes them think of a bad time? Sometimes though I even like to listen to a song that’s attached to a bad time if only to be happy about the good times.

My favorite genre of music is old school R&B like Earth Wind and Fire, Gap Band, Stevie Wonder and some others. The songs appeal to me because they remind me of a happy time as a kid in the 70’s. My mother at the time had a boyfriend that I saw as a father figure and someone I looked up to. To me he was a provider, strong and decent. It wasn’t until later I realized that he was a womanizer, mean to my mom though never hit her and wasn’t such a great provider.

We had a record player in the apartment we lived in  with R&B albums stacked in milk crates set on their side to form sort of a table for the speakers on top. Bo, my mothers boyfriend, would play the records and  smoke weed while doing them old time dance moves. My mom would laugh loudly and I would look on wishing I could dance like that too. Perhaps the picture of what I described would not be appealing to some but it was to me. I was young and saw nothing wrong what what was going on. Bo would take me sledding around the woods over logs and grass pulling me with a rope while I sat in a long sled. It must have been hard to pull the sled like that around the woods but he would do it without stopping even. To me Bo was a great guy.

Eventually Bo left, like all my moms boyfriends, but over the years I would get less and less attached to them. I think it was around 1985 the last time I cried when one left. After that it didn’t matter much. Interestingly it’s R&B prior to this that I like. Anything newer than that I just don’t relate to or care for much.

My iPod playlist has music from my selection but also has music from my wife. Her taste is very different from mine but I do listen to her selection of songs sometimes just so I can find out of there’s something I might like and I have. During a recent trip north with the girls I gave one of her songs a try called “Living Proof” by Gregory Alan Isakov. I remember we were driving down a country road on our way to Empire. The girls were sleeping and I was thinking about our destination, of course thinking about my childhood memories of the place, and how much fun we would have there. When I listen to the song now I think of that day up north and it makes me smile.

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