A song that reminds me of myself- I didn’t really know what to make of this criteria, so I’ve just gone for one of my favourite songs, to which there are some very good memories attached. I remember desperately trying to get tickets for Milburn’s reunion gigs in 2016, failing miserably until they added an extra date that, miraculously, I managed to buy tickets for. That still stands as one of my favourite ever gigs, and ‘What You Could’ve Won’ was arguably the perfect concluding song. There was something about the the roaring crescendos, the punchy riff, the emotionally weighted lyrics and the euphoria of the crowd that made an impression on me, one that has never really left. Every time I listen to this song or see it performed again, I feel as though I’m back in the midst of that crowd, and that is the kind of feeling that makes music so powerful. ‘What You Could’ve Won’ will always remind me of good times spent with good people, and that makes it the perfect song to finish off this 30 day challenge.
Picking a song that reminds me of myself was hard. Some people undoubtedly have a song that defines them, instantly recognisable whenever it is heard by anyone that knows them. Despite my love of many songs, there is not one that is unmistakably mine. I don't know if it reminds me of myself, but the song I've chosen for the last day of this challenge is possibly one of the most beautiful pieces of music ever. Coldplay's 'Paradise' has always been a favourite song of mine but in a beautifully moving African-inspired instrumental version, The Piano Guys elevate the original to a whole new level and it shines. After using the song to create a video for a trip to Mozambique last April, the memories associated with this music are so special. If nothing else, it will forever remind me of a time in my life that will always be part of who I am.
This song doesn’t actually remind me of myself, but Robbie Williams’ Instagram live karaoke version of it really reminds me of myself when I’m about six pints down. He tries to sing along, but can’t focus, chats shit about how the song’s really important to him and intermittently goes “listen to these lyrics man” before admitting he doesn’t really know what they mean. He doesn’t know half the words and his singing along goes in and out with no real rhyme or reason to it, before he professes that he’s “absolutely battered that song” and earnestly asks “do we not live in a dystopian world already?”. Whenever the pubs reopen, I reckon that within a few hours I’ll have played out the scene of him singing along to it almost identically, with loads of enthusiasm but absolutely no skill or ability.
Who else to finish my 30 day challenge off with but the Prince of Indie Rock himself: Mac DeMarco. When thinking about a song that reminds me of myself, this is the first one that came to mind. This track is from Mac’s most recent album Here Comes The Cowboy, and details living in the moment, moving from one thing to the next and just keeping on. It reminds me to take a much needed breather in times where I feel like that ‘Little Dog’, and that I’ve got the rest of my life to worry so I way as well relax now, something easier said than done. As long as I stay on the straight and narrow everything should be alright.
This is a difficultly deep one isn’t it? I’ve flicked between so many songs, from 'Alright' by Supergrass to the From the Sidelines cricket corner theme tune 'Dreadlock Holiday', but I finally settled on 'Half the World Away' by Oasis. Whilst I’m glad I managed to fit Oasis in somewhere, I didn’t want to finish on a sad song. 'Half the World Away' just sums up me at the moment, stuck somewhere, scratching around trying to finish my degree whilst simultaneously trying to figure out where I want to go and what I want to do next. It's a song that feels like you’re trapped and desperate to get out, but can’t, and although things feel like that at the moment, not just for me but a lot of people I’m guessing, the main takeaway from the song is despite all this, “I don’t feel down”, there’s reason to be optimistic and things will work out.
So this is it, the final day. It's been a pleasure writing these, and I'm sad they're over, but lets get into the final one!
Yes, you read that right, I'm a musician. The song that reminds me of myself is none other than one of my own masterpieces, 'Suck Me'. It's a "parody" of Frank Sinatra's 'That's Life', with the lyrics changed to be better. I wish I could claim writing credits, but that honor goes to the esteemed Thomas Leach, I am merely the instrument. My heavenly, dulcet toned voice is a pleasure to listen to, and lyrics such as "I said suck me, (suck me) or I'll cum in my jeans" are sure to bring a tear to your eye. I think anyone that listens will agree that it's safe to say I gave Sinatra a run for his money.
No official release exists of this song (yet), and the only way to listen to it is my asking me to send you a low quality messenger recording of me singing it over a karaoke instrumental but fear not, the lo-fi aesthetic adds to the charm.
I am not proud of myself.
I was really stuck with this song, far too deep for me to fully get it. So I've cheated a little and picked two songs one for who I am, and one for where I've come from.
Probably best known from its use in the Assassin's Creed: Revalations trailer this song uses it's powerful imagery to tell the tale of a fight. The heavy beat akin to a war-drum can be heard throughout the song marching along, whilst the lyrics talk of escaping the fight. This song stands out to me mostly because of how it speaks of a struggle, but not being sure that you can weather it. That you enjoy the fight, but need to walk away. Maybe it's that sense of being torn on what to do that I am drawn to for thinking about myself.
I picked this song mostly because of how it is a song of peace. Inspired by an IRA bombing the song is all about advocating for an end to the troubles. Maybe I picked it because it is against conflict, maybe I picked it because of family history, but to be honest I don't know. All I know is it is a fantastic tune, that makes me think of where I come from, and is still relevant to this day.
Anyone who knows me well knows that Radiohead are my favourite band and 'Bullet Proof ... I Wish I Was' is possibly the saddest song they've ever written. Taken from their sophomore effort The Bends, 'Bullet Proof' is one of the bands most underrated songs and for me their most relatable. Thom Yorke has a beautiful way of writing about vulnerability, describing his own mental battles in terms of how sensitive it feels. The song has a powerful metaphor underlying it. To be "bulletproof" is to be immune to other people's opinions of you and to feel strong. Instead the bullets fill the emptiness inside until the real you is dead and the bullets splinter off into your psyche.
Sensitivity in men is still looked down upon by many, as is being open about your feelings. The world expects you to be "bulletproof", vulnerability is weakness. 'Bullet Proof ... I Wish I Was' describes how many of us feel inside, wishing that we didn't feel the way we did and that the words drilled into us weren't true. If Radiohead have taught me anything over the years it's that openness isn't something to be ashamed of. When you own the way you feel and share your burden with others you'll find that your wounds begin to heal and the bullets bounce right off.