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  • The soundtrack of memories

    I recently spent an evening watching the CMT music awards, and the final performance of the night transported me back to the late ‘80s and road trips with my parents and brother.

    The song?

    “September” by Earth, Wind and Fire.

    Once upon a time, from 1989-90, Shell gas stations sold cassette tapes with a fill up at the pump. There were seven volumes of cassettes called “Cruisin’ Classics” that featured some of the best music from the ‘50s-‘60s, ‘60s-‘70s and ‘70s-‘80s.

    I think we owned them all, but the tape we played the most — to the point that the words printed on the sides eventually rubbed off — was Volume V: More ‘70s & ‘80s, that included the song that prompted this blog.

    blog music playlist

    I asked my brother Scott if he remembered listening to these tapes, and he replied with, “Wake Me Up Before You Go Go,” the Wham! song just a few before “September” on the playlist (see full list below).

    Do you think it is possible to recreate a memory?

    I remember having so much fun playing these tapes and singing along loudly to the music whenever my family was in the car.

    Was it truly the music that made the memory so vivid, or the company of my family? 

    Next month I will be embarking on a long road trip across the U.S. with my husband and best friend, and it occurred to me that I could download the music and recreate the playlists from my favorite tapes — which are sadly long gone from my music collection, as is the ability to play a cassette in my car — for the drive.

    I can’t ever recreate a family road trip, as both of my parents have passed — but can I create memories with loved ones now using old memories as inspiration?

    Will they be as precious 20 or 30 years from now as the ones from my childhood?

    I guess only time will tell, but, at the very least, we will have great cruisin’ music to keep us company.

    Volume V: More 70’s & 80’s
    Listen To The Music—The Doobie Brothers
    It’s So Easy—Linda Ronstadt
    Ventura Highway–America
    Could It Be I’m Falling In Love—The Spinners
    Can’t Fight This Feeling—REO Speedwagon
    The Heat Is On—Glenn Frey
    Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go—Wham!
    Kiss On My List—Hall & Oates
    September—Earth, Wind & Fire
    Footloose—Kenny Loggins

    © Arlington Catholic Herald 2021