Taking Tea in the Kasbah

Music. Such a personal thing, an expression of oneself and our current mood, put to lyrics and melodies and rhythms. The music we’re drawn to is a reflection of our personality and preferences, just like the books we love or the movies we enjoy or any other art form that moves us to rave about it to our friends and family. And what appeals to us can vary as widely as the genres of music out there, be it a rockin’ guitar solo, a haunting voice, or the deep, soulful sounds of a cello. It can be soothing or inspiring. It can draw us deeper into a feeling or keep us tethered just above it.

photo credit: danmachold via photopin cc

photo credit: danmachold via photopin cc

I have what I believe to be an eclectic taste in music, often letting my mood be the one to select what I’ll listen to next. I’m also extremely protective of my musical preferences and usually unwilling to openly share whether I’ve downloaded a certain song onto my phone or whether a song moves me to tears every time I hear it. That’s what comes of hanging out with people who are really into music, always knowing which is the upcoming cool band to listen to, or which songs from long ago clearly stand the test of time, or can say what real music is vs the crap that gets played on the radio.

I’ll admit I’ve been intimidated by such knowledge and coolness, the likes of which I know I’ll never possess. I’m always a few years and a couple of albums behind the hipster music crowd. My new discoveries and favorites are on everyone else’s outdated and discarded iPods. I don’t contribute to discussions about music because I can’t intelligently argue the merits of one album over another or hold my own in a musical debate. When you have some music tastes in common with 13 year-olds as well as the elderly, when you can dance it out to pop songs and 80’s classics and then get lost in a concerto like nobody’s business, people tend to tease you. Relentlessly. After a while you learn to keep your preferences to yourself, to just not talk about it anymore.

So why, then, when it was my turn to choose the WanaFriday topic of the week, did I suggest we write about a current favorite song and what draws us to it?

Because it’s time to stop hiding who I am and what I like.

And also, if I’m going to be totally honest, Chuck Wendig’s post this week on The Way We Talk About Pop Culture inspired me to come out of my self-imposed musical closet and take a step towards owning what I like.

So in that vein, here’s a song that always seems to repeatedly make it into my playlists: Van Morrison’s Astral Weeks. It’s a song that has the uncanny power to make me believe I’m at the lake house I don’t own (yet) on a warm summer’s evening, sitting on the dock with a tasty beverage in hand, watching the sun set over the water, surrounded by those I cherish and love.



Be sure to check out these fabulous writers to see which songs they have on consistent rotation in their music collection:

Liv Rancourt: Music for Sleepy Hollow

Kim Griffin: The Mountain

Ellen Gregory: I’ll Take a Harmony with My Wine

Siri Paulson: What’s Stuck in Your Head?

Dianna Bell: Witty Statements with Album Names

How about you, lovely readers? What song do you have on repeat in your playlist? What kinds of music are you drawn to? Do you proudly own what you like or have you enjoyed it in relative privacy like I’ve been doing for far too long? Sit, sip, and step out of the musical closet with me if you want to. I always love to hear from you.


14 thoughts on “Owning It

    • I think you and I are music soul mates or something. Once again, it’s really too bad we live on opposite sides of the country. Or maybe not. I think we’d probably distract each other too much with making mix tapes for each other and famous deceased people. πŸ˜‰

  1. Great song! I know very little Van Morrison, but I totally get the mood this invokes in you. As you say, music is personal, and many of us like all sorts of stuff. I tend to be a bit stuck in the 90s as far as music goes though.

    • I feel like I skipped the 90’s music era, probably because I was a child of the 80’s and have a strong nostalgic pull to those songs and bands. I think it’s time to dig a bit deeper into that time frame and add some new faves to my playlists.

  2. Okay, my laptop is possessed by demons and wouldn’t play the video from my Firefox browser, or from Chrome, so I went to my trusty iPhone YouTube app. So glad I did! My knowledge of Van Morrison was pretty much limited to Brown-Eyed Girl, Moondance, and Into The Mystic, but now I think I should listen to more of his stuff. And anyone who can jam with the teens & dance with the old folks should be proud of the range of her musical tastes. You just keep dancing!

    • Many thanks, Liv. I’m glad you found a way to listen to it. Van Morrison has some GREAT songs. Into the Mystic is a fabulous one as are Moondance and Brown Eyed Girl. Crazy Love (on Moondance) and Sweet Thing (also on Astral Weeks) are two of my other faves that you might like as well.

  3. I absolutely LOVE Van Morrison.
    This song takes me to a place where I’m in the middle of a big grassy field with blankets and people strewn all around at twilight ~ bonfire in the center, people talking and laughing and dancing while Van plays this next to the fire.
    Great post. Music IS so personal, isn’t it πŸ™‚

    • Thanks, Kim! I’m so happy to find another Van Morrison fan. And I absolutely LOVE the image it evokes in you. When I’m not sitting lakeside, I’ll be thinking of that scene, with the exception that I’d add in a few hundred fireflies twinkling in the woods surrounding the field. πŸ™‚

  4. Songs taught me it is possible to nail those first fifty words. Songs taught me it was possible to escape into another world, if only for 3 or 4 minutes, when childhood got too tough. I still escape in music, for sanity, for exercise, for fun. Lately, I’ve been in Pink, Raise-Your-Glass mode. That, and the theme from the Adam’s Family.

    • Songs have the power that books do, don’t they. I love that about art, the way it can transport you somewhere else out of joy or the need to preserve one’s sanity. I also love that you’ve been in a Pink Raise-Your-Glass Mode. She either brings out a need for me to punch something or turn up the tunes and dance it out.

  5. I’m a lot like you when it comes to musical taste, Tami. Mine is all over the map, and a music hipster I’ve never been. Today, I’m comfortable in my skin about my likes and preferences. Looking back to my teens and twenties and the music I liked then, I can see how my tastes have evolved and refined. I guess those changes have happened across the board in my life, but the changes in my musical preferences over the years make it apparent. I too love you song choice. Can’t go wrong with Van Morrison. πŸ˜‰

    • Thanks, Elizabeth. I’m glad to know I’m in good company in my love of Van Morrison. πŸ™‚

  6. John Meyer gets a lot of play on my playlists. I also have a thing for acoustic covers of pop songs. πŸ™‚

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