Friday, January 04, 2008

Peace, Love, and Understanding

There's a channel on XM Radio called Fred (Channel 44), which plays alternative music from the late 70's through about 1993 (which a particular exclusion of anything remotely grunge). It's one of those channels that even stumps me with some of the tunes they dig up.

Having worked in alternative rock radio in the early 90's, we played a lot of these songs, so listening to Fred usually elicits a few memories and "oh, wow" moments.

Last week, they were playing the "Fred Essentials," counting down over 2,000 alternative hits from the "Fred Era." If I do listen to my XM Radio, it's at my desk at work.

Listening to Fred inspired me to add a bunch of early 80's alternative to my regular itunes playlist - notably some great music by New Order, The Jam, Talking Heads, and an artist that caused me to have a "moment" at the gym this evening, Elvis Costello.

I was on the elliptical machine, toward the end of my 30 minutes, and on shuffled "(What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace, Love, and Understanding," one of his most well-known songs, a song I played on the radio many times, and a song I have heard often since - basically one I'm quite familiar with.

I'm not sure what clicked for me when it rocked into my ears, but it was one of those moments where the perfect song came on at the perfect time. Friday night, ready for the weekend, and one of the most inspiring 3 minutes and 31 seconds I have had in days.

I don't know why this song at that moment. It just kind of happened.

I listened to it twice in a row, and would have sung out loud if I wasn't amidst sweaty onlookers.

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