Tuesday, 14 June 2011

The rhythm of life.

My morning routine is thus: wake up to the sound of P’s alarm, hide under the sheets while he gets a shower (always sneaking a look over the top when he comes back in the bedroom and drops his towel), tell him he looks handsome in a suit, kiss him goodbye on his way to work, roll over to his still-warm side for a 20-minute snooze, wake up again to the sound of my own alarm, sit up, tell Sgt Pepper she looks pretty all curled up at the foot of the bed, give her a little cuddle, get up, have a wee (the first is always the best of the day, don’t you think?), stumble into the kitchen, fire up the coffee machine, turn on BBC 6Music.

I love 6Music. In a time of my life where I suspect I’m too old for Radio 1, too stupid for Radio 4 and too impatient for commercial radio, it makes me feel at home. So much, in fact, that a few weeks ago, when a call went out for listeners’ ‘biorhythms’ tracks (one song that makes them feel, one song that makes them think, and one song that makes them dance), I got stuck right in, tweeted in my selections, and found myself on the radio introducing them.

The sum total of what I said while live on air was ‘errrr um I like this song because it’s sort of, well y’know, yeah’. And thus, ever since, it’s been one of those situations that I’ve been reliving in my head, wishing that I’d said something more than the indecipherable drawl that actually left my mouth. The issue wasn’t so much that I’d made a tit of myself on national radio (heck, I’m perfectly au fait with making a tit of myself), but more that my choices were, if I do say so myself, blinding tracks that I hadn’t done justice.

Of course, my blogging about said tracks may not do them any justice either, but in light of me being an infinitely better communicator in prose than in person (which says terrifyingly little about my ability to hold a conversation), I figured I’d give it a shot. So here, dear reader, are my biorhythms.

To feel: Beautiful Child, Rufus Wainwright

It’s eleven years this autumn since I moved to London, but passing a decade in the place I now call home hasn’t stopped me missing Derby. My family are the main reason, of course, but there’s also the other stuff: being called ‘duck’, Birds cakes, my football team, the sarnie shop in Littleover village that advertises ‘cobs and pop’. Sometimes, even, I think I miss my home city enough to move back there – until, of course, I get back down south and realise that, alas, I love London even more than I miss Derby. I suspect, however, that I’ll never stop getting nostalgic about the place (even if I end up living there again one day); nor will I stop playing this record on my way into the city. I’ll preface this by saying that this is a personal pleasure I reserve for the times when I’m driving alone (one of P’s few faults is his inability to appreciate Rufus Wainwright. Or South Park), but every time I leave the M1 and hit the A50, I cue up this record, turn the stereo up to a volume that could easily get me arrested, and belt this baby out at the top of my lungs, often with joyous tears streaming down my daft little cheeks. Because, to me at least, this glorious song is about coming home. It’s only recently that I discovered that, in fact, Rufus Wainwright actually wrote these lyrics about the way he felt when coming out of rehab. But, speaking as someone who’s never been addicted to anything more than Tunnocks Teacakes, I expect that leaving rehab is also a feeling much like coming home; that regained ability to see things through innocent eyes. Perhaps I’m overanalysing it. And it doesn’t matter if I am. Because, frankly, even if Rufus were singing about the increase in his gas bill, the alphebetising of his DVD collection, or how much he likes Dairylea, this unashamedly inspiring piece of music could still say everything the lyrics didn’t. (For the record, though, I could probably buy into a song about Dairylea equally as much.)

To think: Best Imitation of Myself, Ben Folds Five

I’m sure many 6Music listeners would see this option as a chance to flaunt their intelligence with a song by Yes or Pink Floyd or Kraftwerk or Emerson, Lake & Palmer or somesuch. And I don’t doubt that those same people would have scoffed at this silly little ditty being my ‘thinking’ choice. But the truth of the matter is, that stuff’s just not my taste. I’m just a simple lass who appreciates simple tunes. I don’t want to spend hours rifling through snippy messageboards to understand a lyric; I’m of the opinion that pop music should be just that, with its arms open to all, and that songwriters should just come the fuck out with it. But anyway, less about The World According To Lisa Lynch, and more about this record. The reason I chose this as a song that makes me think, then, is that it reminds me of the kind of thinking I did as a 16 year old. I discovered Ben Folds at one of those awkward teenage times when you suddenly question why your mates are your mates, why your life is seemingly hanging in the balance of a GCSE grade, and why your boyfriend is the kind of daft Derby dickhead who stares at himself in the mirror while you’re shagging. Hence, to the self-conscious teenage me, Ben Folds was a king of introspection who, in this song in particular, spoke my language. I know, right? Dawsons Creek, eat your heart out. Silly a sentiment as that is, though, Best Imitation of Myself speaks of a crime we’re all guilty of, and me more than most. Take this blog, for example. Or indeed any blog. Little corners of t’internet like this allow us an opportunity we’re not usually afforded: the chance to create an online version of ourselves that’s perhaps more interesting, or more funny, or more confident than the one we might actually be. I’m certainly guilty of it, even to a point where I continually worry when meeting people in person – people who’ve only previously ‘met’ the me on the blog – that they’ll be horribly disappointed when they realise I’m just an ordinary, self-conscious shitkicker made interesting only by a cancer diagnosis. Right now, in fact, I’m worrying about being found out over the next couple of days, when I head to Guernsey to give a talk to a roomful of expectant women. But that’s a story for another post…

To dance: Pride and Joy, Marvin Gaye

On the run-up to our wedding, there was a fair bit of speculation about what our first dance would be. I mean, obviously, it was going to be a Beatles record, given that me and P were – are – bordering on Beatles obsessives, and had fallen in love to the soundtrack of Abbey Road. What our family and friends failed to remember, however, was that as well as Beatles fans, we’re also crafty bastards, hence the first dance at our wedding wasn’t a Beatles record at all: it was Marvin Gaye’s Pride and Joy. In actual fact, there was a sneaky Beatles reference in our choice, given that, on the band’s first trip to the US, they were so sick of hearing their own records on the radio that they’d phone in to request this instead, but, as gut decisions go, that wasn’t the reason we picked this. As I remember it (P may, of course, tell you different), it was a pretty natural choice: we’d always loved the track and, as much as we each loathe the term ‘our song’, this was as close to gaining that sickly status as any other. Having found it an unnervingly easy choice to make, however, I remember us spending an evening rifling through iTunes in the tiny living room of our old flat, me hitting play on a dizzying number of tunes while making my notoriously uncomfortable dancer of a future husband shuffle about to each one. But in the end, it really was as easy a decision as it had initially seemed. Because, if you’ll forgive the soppy sentiment, Pride and Joy embodies everything our relationship was, and still is: uncomplicated, sweet, cheeky and, most importantly, happy. Plus it didn’t hurt that, at a mere 2:08, P wouldn’t have to spend too long on the dancefloor…


I don’t normally specifically request comments on my blog (and please don’t take from it that I’m not interested in what you have to say; I’m ALWAYS interested in what you have to say… in an insomnia-inducing manner that’d make your head spin) but, today, I’m breaking the habit of a lifetime and ending on a question. So, if you will, tell me: what are your biorhythms tracks…?

12 comments:

April-rose aka Job_Doctor / craftylittleape said...

A song that makes me dance: Mr Brightside - The Killers.

A bit of an obvious choice for my 25 yo self but it reminds me of my good experiences of university and dear friends, it's rhythm gets me at the core everytime and before long I'm jumping up and down waving my arms around with my eyes closed singing loudly. So loudly in fact a DJ once told me to shut up - X factor I am not.

A song that makes me feel... soooo many of these, as a music fanatic I think it's impossible not to have a song for everything and everyone but Anna Begins - Counting Crows has got to be it. 'Every time she sneezes I believe it's love' I mean what a lyric. This song has made me a die hard Counting Crows song, alot of people think they're depressing but for me they write stories that no other band does quite so well. (In my humble opinion of course).

A song that makes me think... Landslide - Fleetwood Mac but the live version. Something about Stevie Nicks voice in this song moves me and makes me think about my life. It could be because I am now of an age where I am settling down in every aspect of my life and it makes me reflect 'can I handle the seasons of my life' - Can I? Having been through a lot of emotional crap I listen to this song to remind myself of how far I have come.

Ok... the emotional stuff I refer too can be seen read here: http://blog.britishmedicaljobs.com/rape-looking-past-the-taboo

Thanks for this blog Lisa think I may have to stick Spotify on now :D x

Scubadog said...

You write beautifully and with such honesty and humour. This really made me smile. Thanks for a bright start to a dull, grey day

Helen said...

Damn you, Lynch. Must you ALWAYS make me cry?!

Think... Brick by Ben Folds Five. Makes me cry. Most songs I love do. Ha.

Feel... Human by The Killers. It was mine and C's song and I cannot hear it without tears streaming down my face. Both good and bad tears. The good grow more prevalent each time.

Dance... Never Forget by Take That. Yes, really. From the moment it was released until now it's followed me. Teenage devastation when they split up, university club nights and then the concerts since they reformed. It's my favourite song and never fails to get me dancing. As much as anyone can dance to it.

Mary said...

Feel: Faith No More - Ashes to Ashes

Not to be confused with the Bowie song by the same name, this sounds like the apocalypse. In a good way.

Think: Simon and Garfunkel - Sounds of Silence

There are few songs with such visually evocative lyrics, and the harmonies are utterly haunting.

Dance: Tori Amos - Raspberry Swirl

Incredible dance track about bodily fluids. Best performed by the woman herself on two pianos at the same time. Bonus points for a video which features both piglets and jelly.

* * *

I know you said you don't listen to Radio 4, but did you contribute to their desert island discs "survey"?

Either way, would like to hear Alright Tit's desert island discs...

Anonymous said...

Think: Damien Rice - 9 crimes

Feel: Angus & Julia Stone - Big Jet Plane

Dance: Jimi Hendrix - Fire (only when I am alone though)

Millie said...

Hi Lisa,

Sorry for butting in like this, I'm 21 in London and have just found and read the whole of your blog (not in a stalker like way - a friend told me it'd give me a decent insight into whats to come) after recently being diagnosed with advanced breast cancer.

Can I just say thank you for being so brutally honest, it has really helped having an non-rose tinted view of chemotherapy.

If I can show half of the strength you have I'll be proud.

Millie.

Lisa Lynch said...

Millie, hello! And not butting in at all; everyone's welcome here, m'duck.

What an utter pisser, eh? I'm so, so sorry you're up against The Bullshit at such a ludicrous age, it's fucking rubbish. (Apologies; I tend to get a bit sweary where cancer's concerned.) BUT... you. will. be. fine. Just give it some kick-ass and a whole heap of expletives and I don;t doubt for a moment that you'll soon be enjoying the lovely stuff that's on the other side. And in the meantime, you know where I am if you need owt, right? Huge love to you, darling. x

Everyone else? Hello! Bloody good choices there; I'm downloading your picks from iTunes as we speak. Can't tell you how much I loved writing about those songs, and hearing your thoughts too.

Mary – loved your idea about desert island discs. I'm going to leave that thought to bake in my mind's oven, but watch this space...

L.x

Lisa Lynch said...

Millie, hello! And not butting in at all; everyone's welcome here, m'duck.

What an utter pisser, eh? I'm so, so sorry you're up against The Bullshit at such a ludicrous age, it's fucking rubbish. (Apologies; I tend to get a bit sweary where cancer's concerned.) BUT... you. will. be. fine. Just give it some kick-ass and a whole heap of expletives and I don;t doubt for a moment that you'll soon be enjoying the lovely stuff that's on the other side. And in the meantime, you know where I am if you need owt, right? Huge love to you, darling. x

Everyone else? Hello! Bloody good choices there; I'm downloading your picks from iTunes as we speak. Can't tell you how much I loved writing about those songs, and hearing your thoughts too.

Mary – loved your idea about desert island discs. I'm going to leave that thought to bake in my mind's oven, but watch this space...

L.x

Annie said...

Hi All,

Just to add me own twopenneth! (Also to Millie, am also in my twenties (albeit later on in them!) and also in the process of trying to kick advanced cancer in the balls! Feel free to come and say hello)

Think: The Rose (Bette Middler, but moreso Michael Ball's version) - right now.... (I am a little bit obsessed with Mr Ball, brought on by an early obsession with Les Miserables) the song's not cool, but somehow very beautiful and thoughful! (ok.... just me then!)

Feel: Invincible (Muse) - especialy since 'the diagnosis' - says it all really...

Dance: I Love to Love (Tina Charles) - because sometimes horrifically cheesy is the only way!!!!!!!!!!!!

In fact have been sent home from work with nasty cold, am going to put it on now and dance round the living room!

Thanks for a(nother) great post!!

Annie xx

Annie said...

Oh God! How did I not include any Elbow?! (sorry bit obsessed there too!!)

Can I have a second 'music to think' (please please?!) if so, 'Dear Friends' (and if I really really really can't, then this one should sooooooooo be there instead!!)

Sorry, will not post anymore random things now!!!

Annie xx

MPDDK-mm4 said...

Is everyone welcome here?
I'm not a Bullshit survivor, but by heck, some of this reading does bring a tear to the eye (read: my keyboard is about as damp as it gets for a 24-year-old lad, and that's saying something).

Just wanted to contribute to the Desert-Island discs thing.

Feel - Endless Flight by Gustavo Santaolalla.

Think - Pause by Emily Barker & The Red Clay Halo.

Dance - Valerie by Mark Ronson & Amy Winehouse. I've just put this on & simultaneously started dancing whilst sat at my laptop.

Lisa Lynch said...

Hell yeah, EVERYONE is welcome here!

And re: Valerie... I've just done exactly the same.

L.x