Willie Nelson turned 75 a couple of months ago, same day my Moose turned 4. I am a great admirer of Mr. Nelson. There is something about the sound of that mans voice the comforts me. He is one of the voices that calms me. Just listen to Angel Flying to Close to the Ground and tell me it doesn’t affect you.
Ever since I was a little girl I was very aware of the affect that certain people’s voice had over me. My Grandfather would sit in his big rocker with me on his lap and sing me Nat King Cole songs. I can still remember the sound of his voice, and feel the humming in his chest while I lay my head against him in that big ole chair. His voice soothed me. He would trace figure eights on my forehead while he sang very quietly to me, “there was a little girl, who had a little curl, right in the middle of her forehead, and when she was good, she was very, very good, but when she was bad she was horrid”.
When I got a little bit older and I was going through those tragic teenage years where I was fighting with my parents and everything was blown into epic proportions, I would always go next door to him and seek comfort in his words and his singing. I would be whining about whatever trivial little thing was bothering me and he would break into a song. The most memorable was Nat’s Smile. To this day I can’t hear that song without crying. He would sing louder and louder and I would swat him away and whine even more, but he just kept on singing. Mona Lisa was also a big favorite of his, especially when I was moaning about something, get it? Moaning….Lisa, bad I know. I miss hearing his voice so much.
There are other voices that make me happy and always bring a smile to my face when I hear them. I’ve listed just a few of the songs that I particularly love.
Van Morrison (Tupelo Honey, Into the Mystic, Someone Like You, Crazy Love, Stranded)
John Lennon (Oh my Love, Jealous Guy, Out the Blue, Beautiful Boy, Woman, Julia, Look at Me)
Eric Clapton (Let it Grow, Bell Bottom Blues, Promises, Running on Faith, Badge)
Stevie Nicks (Has Anyone Ever Written Anything for You, Sara, Rhiannon, Landslide, Silver Springs)
Paul Rodgers – Bad Company (Seagull, Silver, Blue & Gold, Ready for Love, Burin’ Sky)
Annie Lennox (Why, Cold, Fingernail Moon, Stay by Me, Lost)
Rob Thomas (Little Wonders, If I Fall, If You’re Gone, Push, Hang, Ever the Same)
Bonnie Raitt (Nobody’s Girl, All at Once, Cry on my Shoulder)
George Harrison (Isn’t it a Pity, If Not for You, I’d Have you Anytime, All Things Must Pass)
Not only do I love their music, but also I adore their voices. Van & John Lennon’s are both right up there at the top of my list. Van has a tone to his voice that starts in my toes and travels right to the tip of my head. I can be having just the worst day and I turn on the radio and hear Van and suddenly it’s a little better, and my heart slows a few beats, and I take a deep breath and just listen. When I hear Tupelo Honey, I cannot help but smile. It is one of my most favorite songs.
John Lennon’s voice I just will always associate with comfort and contentment. His voice is home to me, always will be. I hear Beautiful Boy and in my mind it's 2am again and I am rocking a baby boy back to sleep.
I think when something happens and it moves you emotionally, you attach a song to it. I attach not only songs but also voices. Those voices are my little piece of tranquility in what can be a sometimes hectic and crazy life. I think we all need to hear those voices.
What voices do that for you?