365 Day Song Challenge: Day 163 – “Gods Of War”

Day 163: A song that reminds you of your best friend. (Volume IV)

“Gods Of War” – Def Leppard

Def LeppardThis is the fourth in a series of posts dedicated to my best friends, posted on their birthdays. (Where it stops, nobody knows.) You can read the first three installments here and here and here.

I seem to have gotten in the habit of these “just in time” postings for people’s birthdays. Perhaps I need people to have birthdays more often so I can actually get to day 365. But anyway…

My friend Pete and I go back to high school as well, but unlike my friend Kris, who I met the first day and immediately clicked with, it took a while to build the friendship with Pete.

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365 Day Song Challenge: Day 123 – “Photograph”

Day 123: A song by your favorite band/artist whose name begins with “D”.

“Photograph” – Def Leppard

PhotographI remember the summer that “Photograph” was huge. There are certain events that summer that really stand out.

This was the summer of 1983. And, it may be my favorite summer ever, music-wise. My family (extended family) rented a cottage at Salisbury Beach (back when there was still something there). This cottage was fairly close to the midway. Who knows how much money we wasted on Skee Ball, video games, black raspberry soft serve ice cream cones, and tickets to “The Himalaya.”

“The Himalaya” was one of those centrifugal force rides where you spin round and round as it simultaneously bounces you up and down while you try not to be thrown from the ride like a cat on a ceiling fan. It was our favorite ride there. Continue Reading

365 Day Song Challenge: Day 11 – “Hysteria”

Day 11. A song you indulge in shameless self pity to

“Hysteria” — Def Leppard

This is a tough one, because, outside of fantasy football (where I whine and wail until the cows come home) I don’t do a lot of self-pity.

At least not these days.

However, there was a time in the past (read: high school) when I seemed to be in a constant state of depression about my love life, or lack thereof. You see, high school is not kind to shy, introverted, geeky types. And for most of my high school career, I fell firmly in that camp. If I had a dollar for every “You’re so sweet” and “I just want to be friends” that I heard, I could… well, I could probably just about buy a nice dinner. But man, it sure felt like a lot more often back then.

At least I’m not bitter.

High school was also the era of Def Leppard. Sure, 1983’s Pyromania was pretty big, but in 1987, they released Hysteria, and after floundering a little bit in the charts, it caught fire and all hell broke loose. (Yes, if you can believe it, this 10-million-plus-selling, ubiquitous-for-over-two-years album actually took a while to catch on because their lead single, “Women,” just didn’t click with people).

Both Hysteria the album and “Hysteria” the song were released at the apex of my misery, so they are both a little bittersweet to me, even now. Someday I’ll write a post about my “Music as Time Machine” theory, but suffice to say, when I hear the song “Hysteria,” I still remember exactly how I felt then.

To be honest, I’m not really a “words” guy. I know the words to plenty of songs, but in a lot of cases, I’m much more attune to the mood of the music itself than to a song’s lyrics.

This is one of those cases. In fact, I barely know the words to the verses. (I just looked them up, and as it turns out, they’re crap. Thank God I never learned them.) But man, take those bridge & chorus lyrics, and the plaintive guitar from the verses and… Well, they sure got me. And I remember more than one instance of self-pity while listening.

Fast forward 25 years (can that really be?) and that shy, introverted, geeky teen is… yeah, still introverted and a bit geeky, but not nearly as shy, and certainly much happier about life in general. As it happens, I’ve got a good life and I’m thankful for that. And my love life turned out pretty well, too. Overall, I can’t really complain.

Except about fantasy football. Don’t even get me started about #%!&ing fantasy football.

At least I’m not bitter…