Tuesday, April 04, 2006

I remember listening to my sisters' records....

The year, 1972 or -73. My two older sisters would once in a rare while be allowed to spend their money on records IF it wasn't rock and roll music. Simon and Garfunkel were allowed, but just barely.

I'm not sure where my mother or other sisters were during this memory. Perhaps they were out in the garden or cooking in the kitchen....but I remember having the living room all to my eight-year-old self. I remember the scratchy brown chesterfield and the knubbly green carpet. I remember taking Simon and Garfunkel's Greatest Hits out of it's white paper and carefully placing it on the record player, then moving the heavy arm over and gently placing it on the black vinyl.

My favorite side was Side 1. They mentioned Jesus in "Mrs. Robinson" for starters, they felt groovy...they sang about silence having a sound. But the song that really got me was "I am a Rock". I would sit there, cross-legged on the floor with the record jacket on my lap, and sing that song with all my childish heart. When the song was over, I'd lift the needle arm and put it back at the beginning of the track and listen to it again, and again, and again...

I was a year younger than everyone else in my class at school, and I didn't fit in there very well. This song made me feel strong inside, I think. I read the lyrics now and they almost make me laugh. They read like bad junior high poetry! But I'm glad that song was there for me when I was a lonely little girl.

8 comments:

Pondering Pig said...

Hey, I was a year younger than everyone in my class too. I barely turned 17 before I graduated. It is a alienated place to be, all right. I was intellectually there but in every other way back with the kids a year behind me, who I couldn't associate with because they were too lowly. Or something.

But wasn't that song about a guy who keeps telling himself he is a rock, an island - but, if you had only been nine, you would have seen he was just telling himself that. He was actually a lonely boy too, like that other great Canadian artist Paul Anka.

This is a really good piece, Paula. Someday I hope you'll post about how you evolved from this little kid into the punk princess. I really want to know.

Kim said...

We had to study that song in High School. The meaning behind thw words...etc, etc. I hate disecting poetry, once you've dicected it, the poem or song loses it's meaning.

Power songs, yeah, I had those when I was younger too...songs that made me feel like I could do it all, that I was important...that you could never hurt me...Music really is so amazing that way...I'm not gonna try to disect that either....

Be blessed.

mull-berry said...

Taking a brand new album out of it's crisp paper sleeve and putting it on a turntable is nothing like today where you struggle with the plastic wrapping on the CD case and watch it disappear into the CD player.

My parents had the Rubber Soul/Beatles album, one by Herb Albert and the Tijuana Brass and the Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker Suite.

Then we (the kids) had The Monkees. My sister and I would put on our white knee-high socks, pretending that they were go-go boots and dance on the coffee table. My brother and neighbor, Jimmy, would play the pretend keyboards. Jimmy liked coming to our house because my mom would let him do stuff like this ... his mom had everything covered in plastic and made them all play outside!

Spoke said...

In the early 70's, I had a red, plastic suitcase-style record player.The single speed was 45. I had many 45s. Beatles, Stones and lots from Wolfman Jack's personal favorites list. If HE liked it, I bought it.
When I put the player near my window and held the needle above the spinning surface, I could pick up the occasional CB Radio conversation. I didn't know what the heck they were saying to each other!

Kim said...

There is something about records...it's why you'll still see people nowadays putting music on vinyl instead of just cding the whole thing....I personally love going to the thrift store and buying a pile of them....sometimes just for the cover (styx has the best covers) for 25 cents a peice. My parents bought themselves a new record player just recently, and I'm grateful.

annacond said...

I love the stuff you remember at my house and then blog about. Last night was cool, it's been too long since I've had a living room full of women eating cheesecake, watching a movie. Thanks!

Commenter said...

I think I studied that song in English. We also had to dissect it too, and compare it to some other poem we had previously dissected.
It was horrible.
I'm glad it made you feel better though, Paula.
Shari

papa herman said...

I remember listening to my parents 'Johnny Cash at Folsom Prison' and wishing that I could sweat like Johnny did on the cover of the LP.

And, I remember when someone quoted a line to "I am a Rock" to me; in reference to me if my rememberance is correct.