I have a tendency to listen to music more often than not. For instance, I work from home and am alone for hours on end working. During this time, I usually will have music on in the background for hours on end. So, somehow I am quite often listening to songs of music.
But this love of music happened many years ago…
I can still close my eyes and see my grandfather’s old turn style record player. I couldn’t have been more than two or three years old. He would play it quite often. This was how I learned how to dance. Granted it was more my feet step onto of his while swaying to the music. But still, he had the patience of a saint with me, especially dancing with me apparently. We danced to many a song. But my favorite was “You Are My Sunshine”. I still see his smiling face beaming while trying to teach me a thing or two about dancing.
My adoration for music was how I ended up with my first record player. OK, so it was a kid proof one. But still I had to have my own records for it. My favorite that I played over and over was from the original Broadway soundtrack, Annie. I was in my happy place listening to the likes of “It’s a Hard Knock Life”. Somehow I also inherited my mom’s old 45’s for Christmas and easter themed music from when she was a kid, too.
It was also my mom who clearly passed on her love for 1960s and 1970s classic rock.
We would listen together to her own copies of Beatles, Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton and many, many more. I also turned her onto the likes of Madonna and Cyndi Lauper, because “Girls Really Do Just Want to Have Fun”!
Yet it wasn’t long before, record players morphed into cassettes. I still vividly recall walking into our local Sam Goody to buy my first New Kids on the Block cassette. I was a Joey McIntyre girl all the way.
And still then finally was CD’s in my late teen years. I had a collection of over 200 CDs of all sorts of music. I owned both a cassette music player and then CD boom box. Many of my CDs were simply remastered versions of the classics I once again grown up with thanks to dear, old mom again. Plus, a few newer ones sprinkled in for good measure.
I would be remiss and lying if I said I didn’t miss the feel of an actual physical item to play music.
But finally caved and stream music on iMusic. Seems like another lifetime ago that I sat on the floor of my bedroom with listening to my records. My own kids only know how to download and stream whatever music they’d like to listen to instantaneously. They will sadly never know the joy of going to an actual store having saved up their own money to buy the latest and greatest music.
But whichever way you slice and dice it music is truly a source of comfort for me. Plus, the memories that are invoked when I do hear so many songs from my past are vast and numerous.
So, I couldn’t resist sharing just a sampling of some of my favorite pieces of music over the years. Don’t get me wrong there are so many songs that mean something to me. As I began to list them, I was honestly struggling to keep it to a minimum of 10. These songs aren’t listed in any particular order or even chronologically by when they first made an impression. But they nonetheless had an impact. Therefore, they needed to be included.
[clickToTweet tweet=”What music changed your life? Find out the 10 that indeed changed my own life here. #FTSF” quote=”What music changed your life? Find out the 10 that indeed changed my own life here. #FTSF” theme=”style1″]
Which songs made the cut?
Find out below…
10 Songs That Have Changed & Impacted My Life
1. Guns and Roses – November Rain
Clearly this one was from my own high school days. A bad break up, which just so happened to coincide with a rainy November in which I replayed Axl Rose’s love ballad for a few rainy weeks on end. Let’s just say Slash and Axl helped me get through my teen misery.
2. Scenes from an Italian Restaurant – Billy Joel
Most know that I am a Billy Joel fan. I have had the good fortune to see him in concert a handful of times now. My all-time favorite though is from Sir Paul McCartney’s concert last fall. He made a guest appearance. Having two greats on one stage made my life! But Billy’s Scenes from an Italian Restaurant shaped my early 20s. It was during this time that I fell in love for the first time in my adult years. I still have fond memories or this time. This song somehow goes along like a package deal.
3. Somebody Saved My Life – Elton John
It happened once upon a midnight clear. Similar with Sir Elton’s song, because this one first played on a cold, but clear winter night in the late 1990s. Someone even imitated butterfly wings during the chorus, because ‘butterflies are free to fly away’! It was a night I will never forget. And whenever I see butterflies I somehow think of that long ago moment.
4. Under My Thumb – The Rolling Stones
What can I say? But as much as I will always stop in my tracks to listen to Mick and Keith for Sympathy for the Devil or Brown Sugar, I always have time for Under My Thumb. Why? Simply, because it took me years to realize that I didn’t have to be under any one’s thumb. Youth and young love have a way of muddying the waters I suppose. But some way, somehow I grew up.
5. Dreams – The Cranberries
A simple slip of paper asking for a vote. Senior year of high school and prom was all we could think about. So, when the senior class was asked to vote on a song that embodied the theme of the night, it was really a simple choice. First time, my vote seemed to matter and make a difference. I mean Dreams were where it was at for we seemingly had our whole lives ahead of us to do just that. Plus, if only it were that easy where voting is concerned.
6. Cryin’ – Aerosmith
Seemed as good of an anthem for my teen years. I mean, I did just that as I divulged with song #1. But getting revenge as Alicia Silverstone did to Stephen Dorff was empowering to my then 17 year old self!
7. In My Life – The Beatles
Let’s not mince words here. I will always pick The Beatles on any music song list. Word for the wise, they show up twice on this list. Just keep on reading to find out. But still, it was a simple phone call that rendered me speechless. And the funeral that followed afterwards for a dear childhood friend will never be forgotten. This friend was also a Beatles fan through and through. So, made sense that they played many songs during his funeral. And this was the one that truly left on mark on me and our friendship.
8. You Got the Right Stuff – New Kids on the Block
Onto a bit lighter times. Another friend and another lifetime. For I was only in 7th grade. But clearly, will never forget my then friend sharing NKOTB with me for the very first time. I may not recall her name anymore. I mean that was almost 30 years ago! But doing the New Kids dance never gets old—even now!
9. Bell Bottom Blues – Derek & the Dominos
I remember the first time I realized that Derek and the Dominos was actually Eric Clapton and his then group. I thought I had stumbled onto gold with Bell Bottom Blues. The tune, the words—just everything about this song spoke to me. Then, I told my mom and she just laughed out loud. This was before LOL was an actual thing. I didn’t know what was so funny until let me in on the secret. Never mind when I found out that Eric Clapton and George Harrison actually shared a wife! Mind blown LOL!
10. Hey Bulldog – The Beatles
As promised, I couldn’t just leave this list with one song from The Fab Four! But why Hey Bulldog? It isn’t one of their more well known songs for sure. But quite simply always loved the notion that if I were ever lonely or needed to talk to someone that I could somehow talk to John Lennon! I mean ‘Imagine’ wouldn’t that be one hell of an interesting conversation. Plus, bonus for anyone who actually knows me in real life. Why? Because this has been my ringtone on my phone for as long as I can recall now.
And while I am pretty sure there are as I said a few more on my list. These are the ones that immediately came rolling out of me.
*Linking up with Kristi, Kenya and Jen for this week’s Finish the Sentence Friday. Then sentence to complete is “10 songs/pieces of music that changed me.”
How about you?
What songs have defined or changed your life?
Now, share with me in the comments…
Meredith Spidel says
Oh my goodness! These brought back such memories of my own–especially Cryin’ and Dreams! Wow, I would have to think about this, but what a great conversation topic for our next date night! 🙂
I love this as a date night conversation. And happy to bring back memories here for you, too 🙂
You and Tamara both did music! So fun! I bopped my head to every song on your list. All the feel too 🙂
I also read Tamara’s and was happily bopping my head, too to hers. So, love the music share here this Friday 🙂
Kenya G. Johnson says
My dad and I were talking about that too, missing having a physical thing to play music on. Not so much cassettes but the record player/stereo componet. I see they sell classic albums in Barnes and Noble now. In Columbia where I’m from they still have the same music store and now the albums are collectectables and go for hundreds of dollars. I can’t have that kind of hobby. Digital it is. Going to scroll back up now and click on your songs.
Kenya, I know exactly what you and your dad mean. It feels weird sometimes to not actually take the needly to drop it down on that right spot of the record. I will have to check my local Barnes and Noble now. Sadly I no longer have a record player. But bet I could get one on Ebay still 🙂
Scenes From An Italian Restaurant is my favorite Billy Joel song!
Dara, I know we totally have a shared love for Billy Joel. What can I say, but Scenes From An Italian Restaurant still gets me every single time!
Such a great list of songs! (And those memories with your grandfather and mom listening to music – so sweet. 🙂 I never thought about how our kids will never know the feeling of going to a store to buy a physical piece of music. So strange!
So very strange and as I was writing this it just dawned on me as though a lightbulb finally went off. I suppose just so sad, but true, Emily!
William Holland says
An interesting mix of music. “In My Life” is still my favorite song of all time….some day I’ll tell you about me meeting Eric Clapton.
For now, though, I have customers to keep happy. Have a great weekend in the snowy eastland!
Omg, I need to know about your meeting with Eric Clapton. Seriously someday you most definitely need to share with me if you wouldn’t mind. And “In My Life” is just perfection to me. Now, wishing you a very Happy Daylight Savings weekend ahead 🙂
My favorite Billy Joel song is “Only the Good Die Young,” but the one on your list is a close second! I still listen to CDs in my car – I like the physical music too.
I definitely like that Billy Joel song, too! And I do still have a CD player in my car. But sadly doesn’t get much use anymore though!
Audrey Johnson says
My husband and I spent almost a month at one point just trying to find a record player in a store to buy so we could play our collections. Very difficult thing now. Thankfully all old things usually work their way back around. Those of us who grew up listening to that crackle of a really old treasured record appreciate it. Youngsters will never understand having to put a needle on the exact spot on an album….
Aundrey, I couldn’t agree more and they just will never know that feeling ever sadly!
I just had to tell you how my eyes widened when I read that you had a kid-safe record player and listened to the Annie soundtrack on it. ME TOO!!! The beige Fischer-Price one? With the handle? And the piece on the bottom for you to wrap the cord? I sat on the floor in front of that thing for hours as a kid, listening to that very soundtrack. I memorized every word. Thanks for the sweet memory!
Aw, I love that you have a similar memory and yes I had the same Fisher Price one, too! Seriously, I can still sing all the songs from Annie backwards and forwards from that time in my life 😉
We have a few in common for SURE. Bell Bottom Blues. Wow. I love the one from that long live album and it’s like.. 10 minutes long. Makes me cry. Cassidy played it for me when we met.
And Someone Saved My Life Tonight was a song I have with him from when we met! Dreams was my favorite song during my freshman year of high school. I thought it really embodied how I felt about this senior guy, Tim. Sigh.
Sounds like we most definitely have a few in common and honestly made me smiling reading and knowing that we do indeed 🙂
Kristi Campbell says
Great songs, Janine! Cranberries! I can’t believe I left them off too. There are so many I didn’t think of last night. So many of your picks are favorites of mine too – or the same band, different song. I also miss physical music. I remember when I first started buying CDs and it was so hard to know which of my favorite tapes to convert first for the superior quality of sound. Also without that annoying getting stuck in the tape player thing. I don’t miss how much space all that stuff took though. My first family rooms after college were 1/2 cd’s, records, and tapes, plus all the equipment to play it all! Took up the room! So glad to have seen your songs and I can picture little you dancing with your grandpa – so sweet.
I can totally remember that time where I still had records, tape and CDs, too. Weird, but there was an overlap of sorts at one point in time. And thank you for giving me a place to actually put my thoughts down on this today 🙂
This is such a great list! I think everyone in our age group remembers staying in the car until November Rain was over, or at least until Slash’s solo was over! In My Life is one of my favorite songs and honestly, the version that sticks in my head, is when Bette Midler sang it in For The Boys! God, I love that movie. Great list, Janine!
Thanks and omg to Slash’s solo as still just a classic moment in rock 🙂
Bri Adams says
Love this list! It’s a blast from the past for sure. I love how music can bring back so many memories.
Thanks Bri and I couldn’t agree more as it truly does bring back so many memories 😉
Pat B says
My favorites here are the ones by Billy Joel and Elton John. I love reading the stories and listening to the songs people have shared for this FTSF prompt.
Me, too Pat and really just such a fun prompt this week 🙂
“It was also my mom who clearly passed on her love for 1960s and 1970s classic rock.”
ayiiee! I lived when Beethoven composed! lol (‘classical music’).
You make an interesting facet of modern music clear, there is much more ‘carry-over’ from one generation to the next during the second half of the 20th C than the first. My parents listened to music of the ’30s and ’40s. I heard the music, but with almost no exceptions, none of those songs are on any of my playlists today. Yet I see music of the second half (rock ‘n roll forward) on the lists of my less age-challenged friends, here in the ‘sphere. Cool
Clark, I love that my parents, specifically my mom helped shape my music likes and dislikes. I have to say my mom was truly hip and cool in her day as far as her music preferences. Plus, I will admit I could have totally seen myself going to concerts with my mom as a friend in her youth. That said I have now gone to concerts with my mom most recently Paul McCartney and she definitely still one cool lady in my humble estimation 🙂
Hi!! I die for Scenes From an Italian Restaurant, I have it favorited on my Sirius so when it comes on my car stereo alerts me and I can listen to it as many times as I want. I think I have almost ever one of these songs on a playlist somewhere (except maybe NKOB 😉 ).
I loved this trip down your memory lane!
Thanks Jen and totally favorite that one, too on Sirius 🙂
Cryin by Aerosmith is one of my favs!! I remember that video so clearly, wow what a throwback! And you already know that anything from Billy Joel is perfect for me!! I adore this list!
Nellie, that video is still one of my favorites and love that we also have Billy Joel in common, too 🙂
Love November Rain.
I can’t dance, but your mention of You Are My Sunshine did remind me of my grandparents.
I got a lot of musical faves from my father, but my mother wasn’t never really into music of any kind.
He likes The Stones, but not me. My sister used to listen to NKOTB, but I was a bit too young and only listened because we shared a room.
Dreams is a classic, now especially that Dolores is gone. That song marked the 90s for me though.
I do think it is nice, the space saver that digital is, but my brother was born in 87 and is a giant record fan, so these things do stay with some younger people. He likes the sound that you just don’t get with today’s sound.
Kerry, I love that your brother born in ’87 is a giant record fan and gives me a bit of hope. My brother was born in ’83 and he has excellent taste in music (probably because it is similar to mine LOL), but he has given into streaming, too. But thanks for sharing with me, too here 😉
Seana Turner says
My list is long.. hard to pick just a few! I am just a bit older than you, so I had albums, as well as cassettes and then CDs. I think I would add “Take it to the Limit” by the Eagles. Just reach for it, go for it, do it. I heard it yesterday and I still love it.
Seana, love The Eagles and perfect addition in my humble estimation 🙂