Monday, February 2, 2009

Tom and Bob

What do these two men have in common?

They are 2 of my absolute favorite musicians (behind my beloved Neil Diamond). I love them. However, my husband thinks that they have the distinctive ability to sing through their noses. To say he is not a fan is an understatement.

From teaching Introductory Psychology over and over, I know that our sense of hearing brings back powerful memories. In terms of emotions, it falls behind our sense of smells, but it's still a pretty strong one. Hearing a song takes me back to where I was when I heard the song or who I was with.

Tom Petty reminds me of my senior year of high school. I had an old tape (wow, that dates me) from my best friend, Mary. I listened to it over and over. I think it was Full Moon Fever. There was a song on it called Zoombie Zoo. It made no sense at all, but it was just so different sounding. I randomly heard it on the radio the other day and called my brother (on my bluetooth since I'm in California and I follow the rules of the road). I told him that I heard Zoombie Zoo and I thought about him. He said that people call him a lot and tell him that songs remind them of him. I guess because he is such a music lover.

Tom Petty also reminds me of the concert that Mary and I went to right after our freshmen year of college started. We went to different colleges, but met in Atlanta at the Omni and saw Tom Petty there. We were shocked by all the old people around us. They were just sitting there politely listening to the music. We'd never been to a concert like this. When American Girl started, we got up and started dancing together much to the shock of the "old" people around us. (Side note: These old people are probably my age now. ugh) It was such a fun time together, but a defining moment in our friendship, too. We tried to keep in touch in college, but kind of went different ways. This was one of the last real times that we spent together.

My love for Bob Dylan started in the same way. Mary introduced me to him with another mix tape. It just fit well with me and my "deep" and "introspective" self at the wise age of 17. I loved how it sounded different than other pop music on the radio and had more of a message behind the lyrics. I was probably so annoying to my roommate in college. Sorry, Brandy.

My grandmother told me that the first time she ever smelled pot was at a Bob Dylan concert. She was an adult and had gone with a friend. She was not a fan of Bob Dylan, like most of my family. She started smelling something funny and then started breaking out in a bad rash. She was allergic to it! How hilarious that she allergic to the smell of it.

I feel like for the past 4 years or so, I have been in the mommy zone of music. As much as I love Dan Zanes and Laurie Berkner, I am ready to listen to music that I like to listen to again. I think I will have to pull out my old mix tapes and figure out who it is that I like now.


Bug said...

I loved Bob Dylan when I was younger and "deeper" into trying to figure out who I was and how I fit in. Now I just find him annoying and nasaly (is that a word?)

Your Aunt Jackie (Kennedy) is a huge Tom Petty fan. You should email her your blog link.

Valerie said...

Tom Petty is the best! I recommend his Greatest Hits album it's definitely an 11 on a scale of for Bob Dylan, I grew up listening to my parents jamming out to him... he speaks to me, haha

Jackie K. said...

Tom Petty and Bob Dylan are two of my top three...The third is Jackson Browne. I took the kids to see Tom Petty in Atlanta last summer, Beth. I was one of those "old people" you saw years ago and my children were among the youngsters. For my teenagers, the most impressive part of the night was when we all smelled the aroma of marijuana wafting over us and their mama was the first one to spot the pot smoker!
Bob Dylan is not nasally. He can sing, Bug. If you don't believe me, believe "Rolling Stone" magazine which voted him one of the Top 10 singers still alive today. Aretha Franklin was tops. As for songwriting, yes, Bob Dylan was Number One on that list. His songs are as timely today as they were 30 years ago... very similar, actually, considering the recent election, economy woes, wars, etc.
If you aren't crazy about Bob's voice but love his songs, check out the "30th Anniversary" CD of others singing Bob Dylan songs. It features Johnny and June Cash, George Harrison, The Band, Eric Clapton and many more singing Bob's tunes. The best two songs on the CD: "License to Kill" and "Rainy Day Woman" sung by none other than TOM PETTY!
I've told my kids that when I die, I want someone to sing "Southern Accents" at my funeral, preferably Tom himself.

Walking to China said...

What about Neil Young? Also fantastic and nasally!

beth said...

Oh! How could I have forgotten Neil Young?