you're reading...

A Personal Journey – with thanks to Etta James

The death this week of Etta James has set me thinking about how important her music has been to me – pretty much all of my life.  In the shifting landscape of the personal anthem, her voice rang through time and again, with everything from At Last to “Damn Your Eyes.”

Of course, the logical progression from there was to consider my anthems over time.  I have a huge music collection – it has always been like that.  I had it on vinyl, on 8-track tape, on cassette tape, on CD, and now on mp3/mp4….as it gets easier to store, the collection becomes even larger and wider ranging.  It gives me such pleasure, and has marked my life in ways that it seems unlikely I will ever risk amnesia – the music is always tied to events and people, and closing my eyes to listen brings back memories in amazing detail.   Although it may bring me a lot of pain at time to remember some things, the pain is always, always tempered by whatever wonder or happiness that preceded it…I know, it is complicated 🙂

I was in the 4th grade when Nat King Cole died, and I thought music was over.  I consoled myself with Ray Charles and got over it pretty quickly, but Nat is still dear to my heart.  And so it goes with all of the great or obscure musicians who have found a way to articulate moments of my life.  Sort of makes me wonder what “Unforgettable” or “Mona Lisa” had to say about my pre-teen existence, but then, it might have been “Route 66”  – which might help explain The Wayward Pioneer…

So what follows is a part of the list of those who have been “Killing Me Softly” in my life.   I’m going to give myself 5 minutes – see who comes to mind.

Etta James, George Benson, Ray Charles, Nat King Cole, Billie Holliday, The Hollies, The Kinks,  Marvin Gaye, Otis Redding, Richard Elliott, Sting, Seal, Janis Joplin, Bonnie Raitt, Elvis Presley, Fleetwood Mac, Fred Eaglesmith, Elton John, J.J. Cale, Natalie Merchant, Eric Clapton, Mozart, John Hiatt, Johnny Cash,  Ry Cooder, Hank Williams, Sr., Vivaldi, Patsy Cline, Joe Cocker, Aretha Franklin, John Coltrane, Van Morrison, Roberta Flack, The Script, The Beatles, Andrea Bocelli, Joan Baez, Alberta Hunter, Robert Earl Keen,  Frank Sinatra, Matt Nathanson, Little Willie John, Diane Schuur, The Eagles, Sarah McLachlan, Grover Washington, Jr., Gregg Allman, Buddy Holly, Louis Armstrong, Bob Dylan, Jimmie Hendrix, BB King,  John Phillips Sousa, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Wilson Pickett, Hope Waits, Enya, Dave Brubeck, KD Lang, The Chieftans,  The Sons of the Pioneers, Stan Getz,  Dr. John, Bach, Cat Stevens, Train, The Doors, Robert Johnson, Fats Domino, Aaron Copeland,  Joni Mitchell, John Lee Hooker,  Tracy Chapman, Sam Cooke,  Willie Nelson, Bob Marley, James Taylor, Carole King, Steelers Wheel, Blondie, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Nina Simone, Hootie and the Blowfish, Guitar Slim, Little Feat, Red Norvo, Linda Ronstadt, Stephen Foster, Crosby, Stills and Nash, The Fine Young Cannibals, Bruce Hornsby, Steve Winwood, U2, Talking Heads, Antonio Scarlatti, Phil Collins, Peter, Paul and Mary, Roy Orbison, Carlos Santana, Muddy Waters, Stanley Jordan, Antonio Vega.

Ok, time’s up.  I think I need to think next about what songs specifically had significance, but that is a nice winter’s project…a life playlist.  It could be the soundtrack for my funeral at some point…but it looks like that might have to be at least a week long event.  iTunes will let me know…at the very least I can sing or hum along while I drive – bearing in mind that there are some songs where you just shut up and listen – and often times, it will be for Etta James.







36 thoughts on “A Personal Journey – with thanks to Etta James

  1. I love your humour ^^ Of course, it will be a huge cocktail party 😉

    Posted by ta fille allemande | January 22, 2012, 1:38 pm
  2. When I initially commented I clicked the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now each time a comment is added I get four emails with the same comment. Is there any way you can remove me from that service? Thanks!

    Posted by Clayton Drost | February 1, 2012, 3:17 am
  3. Hey There. I found your weblog using msn. That is a very well written article. I’ll make sure to bookmark it and return to learn more of your useful information. Thanks for the post. I will certainly comeback.

    Posted by Bundes Trojaner | February 4, 2012, 8:40 pm
  4. I am consequently happy by myself identified that site page. Anyone pretty much suggested everyone only precisely what My spouse and i elected for you to hear for you to along with then some. Cool writing along with many thanks once more pertaining to engaging in that zero toll!

    Posted by Elden Perper | February 8, 2012, 6:26 am
  5. I like the valuable information you provide in your articles. I?ll bookmark your weblog and check again here frequently. I’m quite certain I will learn a lot of new stuff right here! Best of luck for the next!

    Posted by Billig Arbejdstøj | February 9, 2012, 3:51 pm
  6. I read few content on this website. Look forward to checking out your some of your posts again. Thanks for sharing!

    Posted by Mcclester | February 10, 2012, 12:07 am
  7. Good post ! wonderful information what a great web content, I have added your site to my bookmarks. and I will keep an eye on it, Thanks for sharing.

    Posted by Flash Memory | February 10, 2012, 1:57 am
  8. nice website Great article and straight to the point, I have added your site to my web favor. and I will keep an eye on it, Thanks.

    Posted by Ernestina Azevedo | February 12, 2012, 9:36 am
  9. Hello, what a great web content. I have added your site to my favor list Thank you!

    Posted by Dog Crate Covers | February 13, 2012, 12:26 am
  10. Excellent goods from you, man. I’ve understand your stuff previous to and you are just too magnificent. I actually like what you have acquired here, certainly like what you are saying and the way in which you say it. You make it entertaining and you still take care of to keep it sensible. I can’t wait to read much more from you. This is actually a wonderful website.

    Posted by Arbejdsshorts | February 13, 2012, 9:15 am
  11. Thanks for sharing excellent informations. Your site is very cool. I’m impressed by the details that you’ve on this blog. It reveals how nicely you perceive this subject. Bookmarked this web page, will come back for extra articles. You, my pal, ROCK! I found just the information I already searched all over the place and simply couldn’t come across. What an ideal site.

    Posted by fuck buddy stockton | February 13, 2012, 10:58 am
  12. I want your help. I like your side. Your texts are interesting. I entered here by mistake and I started reading. I became interested in the topic and I am thinking it I could use your words on my article, of course with the quotation. Please write me back, thanks very much.

    Posted by kredyty bez zdolności kredytowej | February 13, 2012, 1:57 pm
  13. Its like you read my mind! You appear to understand so much approximately this, like you wrote the book in it or something. I think that you just can do with a few p.c. to force the message home a little bit, however instead of that, this is great blog. A great read. I’ll certainly be back.

    Posted by fuck buddy utah | February 14, 2012, 1:41 am
  14. Thank you for this article, and wait for more on this subject and I like to ask the site manager that may appear to the Post, I admire this wonderful site and articles

    Posted by Sebastian | February 14, 2012, 1:44 am
  15. Can I just say what a relief to find someone who actually knows what theyre talking about on the internet. You definitely know how to bring an issue to light and make it important. More people need to read this and understand this side of the story. I cant believe youre not more popular because you definitely have the gift.

    Posted by Diablo 3 Guide | February 14, 2012, 1:53 am
  16. Valuable information. Lucky me I discovered your website by accident, and I’m stunned why this coincidence did not happened in advance! I bookmarked it.

    Posted by fuck buddy chicago | February 14, 2012, 4:33 pm
  17. You write really interesting, the topics are great. I like this web site. For how long have you been blogging? How much time do you spend on on blogging? I hope that I can use some of your opinions on my site. Yours, Ann

    Posted by kredyty bez bik | February 15, 2012, 8:42 am
    • ann, you are welcome to use my opinions, with credit, please. eother inlcude a link in your reference, or otherwise send people to the blog – i’d appreciate it. i usually only blog once a week…it is really all the time I can spare. i started in August, i think. this is my only blog, so it is all here? thanks so much!

      Posted by waywardpioneer | February 16, 2012, 6:34 am
  18. a bit off-topic, do you utilize a free of charge skin with your website? i liked it.

    Posted by breitling a | February 15, 2012, 1:50 pm
  19. I take pleasure in, result in I found just what I was looking for. You’ve ended my four day long hunt! God Bless you man. Have a nice day. Bye

    Posted by watch random movies | February 16, 2012, 11:31 am
  20. I found your website by Yahoo search engine. I am really glad I have found this information.your website is really interesting and has lots of great info. Thanks for keeping this site.

    Posted by Refugio Roundy | February 16, 2012, 11:34 am
  21. Wonderful site. A lot of useful information here. I am sending it to a few pals ans also sharing in delicious. And naturally, thanks for your sweat!

    Posted by watch movies | February 16, 2012, 1:24 pm
  22. I’ve learn a few just right stuff here. Certainly value bookmarking for revisiting. I wonder how so much attempt you set to make the sort of great informative website.

    Posted by lose weight fast | February 17, 2012, 5:16 pm
  23. Great work! That is the type of info that are meant to be shared across the web. Disgrace on the seek engines for not positioning this put up upper! Come on over and visit my site . Thanks =)

    Posted by watch movies online free | February 18, 2012, 12:16 am
  24. An impressive share, I just given this onto a colleague who was doing a little analysis on this. And he in fact bought me breakfast because I found it for him.. smile. So let me reword that: Thnx for the treat! But yeah Thnkx for spending the time to discuss this, I feel strongly about it and love reading more on this topic. If possible, as you become expertise, would you mind updating your blog with more details? It is highly helpful for me. Big thumb up for this blog post!

    Posted by Diablo 3 Wizard GUide | February 18, 2012, 11:13 pm
  25. Awesome blog, I am going to spend more time learning about this subject

    Posted by Raymond Sannicolas | February 20, 2012, 5:04 pm
  26. Always love to find a new and exciting part of the web!

    Posted by Tresa Robblee | February 20, 2012, 8:50 pm
  27. Nuff respect

    Posted by Glamour Girl | February 21, 2012, 11:04 am


  1. Pingback: Info Puppen - January 30, 2012

  2. Pingback: pre workout supplement - February 3, 2012

  3. Pingback: URL - February 4, 2012

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 835 other followers

Blog Stats

  • 5,503 hits
%d bloggers like this: