With Kara in town for her summer visit we have been spending a lot of time going places and trying to make as many memories as we can pack into a month. Each road trip we have been on has had a soundtrack and I know whenever I hear a certain song now I will hear my kids singing it from the backseat and think about where we were going that day.
Yesterday on our way to San Francisco we had the music going and Usher’s ‘Yeah’ came on and it has been in my top 20 favorite songs since it came out. The girls know this and as I listened to them sing it I knew that this was going to be one of those songs that they will forever relate to me, their mother.
That got me to thinking of the songs that I directly relate to my mother. Beautiful songs like, “Still of the Night” and “Misty Blue” are represented in my memories. I think of all the times dancing to every 1950’s song with my mother in my Auntie Shirley’s kitchen while chicken fried on the stove.
The pure sounds of Do-Wop times and the missing elements of synthesized artificial crap we have now days is what I get when I think of my beautiful mother and her music.
The Four Tops and all of the Motown family was played at high volume in our home as a child and we would grab each other and dance around the room. We did the bop and swung each other around as we sang Jackson 5. The Commodores greatest hits is the soundtrack of my youth. It can make me sad and nostalgic…but it will always be the quickest way to think of ‘family’.
As the girls bounced around to Usher’s ‘Yeah’, I felt kinda sad. THIS is the song they are going to remember me with? Yes, I shared every song from the 1980’s and I am proud to say they were raised right because they know all the words to “Baby Got Back” and every Beastie Boy song from License to Ill.
They also have an extensive knowledge of the 1950’s/1960’s music my mother listened to and know that I love them because I would make them dance with me in the kitchen to some Chubby Checker or Al Green. Alyx has more knowledge of 1970’s music than any 15 year old ever should.
I started to feel a little bit better as some of the other music came on and they knew the words and would say, “Remember when we went….” And I know that the song is what triggered that memory.
I relaxed back into my seat and listened to the singing girls in the backseat when, “It’s Getting Hot in Here.” came on.
“OMG! This song reminds me of Grandma!”
I closed my eyes and held back bursting into laugher because I HAD to hear why in God’s name THIS is the song that reminded the girls of MY MOTHER.
They just all said, “TOTALLY!” and sang along.
I realized that is their memory of my Mom, their grandma. They didn’t get the woman barefoot in the kitchen, ciggerette hanging from her fingers, dancing and laughing with my Auntie and telling stories of how they grew up in Oakland in the 50’s and how much their Mom loved this song.
I’ll take Usher’s “Yeah” as my song…at least it’s not “Hot In Here”.