I think most of us who share bonds over music realize how strongly we associate feelings, memories and lessons learned through the songs that mark that time and space. Take high school; I can still tell you who borrowed my Rick Springfield cassette, who tortured us with freaking REO Speedwagon on bus trips to the ballgames and songs I recall listening to in Art class.
Many of us became familiar with Rob Sheffield when he took part on VH1’s “I Love the 80s” along with other pop culture shows. His new book is entitled Talking to Girls About Duran Duran: One Young Man’s Quest for True Love and a Cooler Haircut. I’d prefer a shorter title, but I’m not his editor.
Each chapter features an 80’s song serving as a time capsule for the author. Some of the usual suspects for the time period are there, and obviously, Duran Duran. I’m looking forward to this read.
Sheffield sums up why he feels music is such a great bookmark in our lives [via Village Voice]:
It’s funny that music does a much better job of storing those memories, both at a personal and a collective cultural level. If you want to get a flavor of what 1985 was like, you can’t go back to the TV or the movies or the bestselling books. Nobody says, “Oh man, what were the Oscar-winning movies of the mid-’80s? Kiss of the Spider Woman, Children of a Lesser God, Out of Africa, I’m going to check those out.” Those movies were forgotten a few years later, but everybody still knows “You Spin Me Round (Like A Record),” even people who weren’t born when it came out.
If you enjoy this style of writing I have a couple of super entertaining blog recommendations for you. Friends Christian (SOLAST) and Steve (Excerpts from a 70’s Teenage Rock Opera) write about their past musical adventures. You may have seen them in my blogroll. Steve has been re-visiting the journals of his youth and blogging the entries along with current day commentary. And Christian writes along the same lines as Sheffield, with a band, concert or song framing his posts. Check ’em out!