There are those times when the memory really sucks. I came up with the concept for this blog post yesterday and then today when I sat down to write it I couldn’t remember which song started me off in this direction. I remembered that when I thought of the concept I immediately thought of every song The Cure ever wrote. Not really. They do mention December a lot though. There was a The Cure song that mentioned “Christmas lights” though.
The Cure – Let’s Go to Bed
When I started listening to The Cure, songs like “Love Song,” “Pictures of You,” and “Friday, I’m in Love” were not yet recorded; and yet, “Let’s Go to Bed” still felt like a song from the early years of The Cure. Now basically everything is from the early years of The Cure. Even “Bloodflowers,” which came out in 2000, is getting pretty close to being from the first half of The Cure’s existence. This was one of the songs that really caught my attention in those early days though. It wasn’t a love song. It wasn’t a break up song. It was a song about relationship stagnation. It felt like a soured relationship that might last for years to come. And depending on how personal it was, it may have lasted for years as last I checked Robert and Mary are still married. I would later get into The Bolshoi whose song “Crack In Smile” might get into the same thematic space as “Let’s Go to Bed,” and yet might actually be darker, but since it doesn’t mention Christmas, I’ll deal with that another time.
But this wasn’t the song that got me onto this theme, and when I opened the Word file to start this blog post, I couldn’t remember what that other song was. I suddenly remembered another song though.
Jane’s Addiction – Three Days
“Three Days” mentions Christmas lights in a spoken word (oh shit, spoken word… I’ll get to that in a minute) at the start of the song. I went and saw Jane’s Addiction right after “Ritual De Lo Habitual” came out, but I didn’t yet own the album. It was at The Bronco Bowl in Dallas and 24/7 Spyz was the opening act. Great show. This song was the absolute highlight for me though. I’ve always been into epic songs, but this is one of the best. It’s not even the only amazing epic song on the album. There is a line in this song where he says “three lovers in three ways,” and I’ve often wondered if the album cover is representative of this line. The album cover was very controversial and there is an alternative cover that just has the text of the First Amendment printed on it. If I ever get around to doing what I will call “The T-Shirts of Chris McGinty” where I’ll try to find video or picture evidence of every t-shirt I’ve ever owned, you’ll see that I had a t-shirt with this album cover.
But I still couldn’t remember the song that got me on this theme. I was experiencing a false memory, but didn’t know it yet. I believed I’d thought of the lyrics of a song and then started thinking of other songs. Turns out that wasn’t the case, but let me first talk about “Family Man.”
Black Flag – Family Man
This was an odd album. It had instrumental tracks with no words, spoken word tracks with no instruments, and then some “normal” songs. “Family Man” is one of the spoken word tracks. It’s not a song, so I don’t have to change the title of this blog post. It’s still three songs. This was the first Black Flag album I ever heard; and if I’m being honest, the only Black Flag album I’ve heard in its entirety. I’m a huge Henry Rollins fan, even if he’s not quite as dark and angry as he once was. The problem is that Rollins wasn’t with Black Flag all that long in the grand scheme. I guess one day I’ll need to give the rest of their discography a listen, but I’ve not felt all that motivated to do so.
But still, I was no closer to remembering what song put me on this path. I did a Google search and found out that others have used the non-Christmas songs that mention Christmas concept for articles and blog posts. A couple of them even mentioned “Let’s Go to Bed,” but no one mentioned “Three Days” and I bet “Family Man” isn’t even on most people’s radar. I wasn’t finding the song in question though. I hadn’t searched the lyrics. I had no lead.
Then I wondered to myself, “Is it possible that you actually listened to the song in question?” But even that seemed unlikely. Wouldn’t I have the song in my short term memory if I’d listened to it? All I could think of was a Peter Murphy song where he says, “Like winter in July,” which is maybe a play on that concept, but doesn’t mention Christmas.
I went to look at my YouTube history and I found it immediately. I would have remembered it eventually, but not because of the actual mention of Christmas. I think of it because of a certain actress. You see there was a movie that was big in the 90s called “Sleepless in Seattle,” and it involves the Empire State Building at Chr…
no, this just in. It appears it’s on Valentine’s Day according to this article I was reading. Hmmm. I mean, the song mentions Christmas, so I don’t care.
Self – Meg Ryan
Self is a group who I got into during the years that I listened to “modern rock” on KTCU. The song that really caught my attention was “Kill the Barflies,” but I liked “Meg Ryan” as well, and it will occasionally get stuck in my head. What happened yesterday was I was listening to “Kill the Barflies” and I decided to listen to “Meg Ryan” as well, which I don’t always do. That’s when I realized I might have a blog theme. And here we are. I don’t know much about Self, but if you don’t know who they are and yet know something by them, it’s the song “Stay Home,” which was featured in one of the Shrek movies.
Anyway, Bah Humbug to all and to all a goodnight.