We all know how certain songs evoke specific memories- "Please don't go" brings back vivid memories of my school farewell party; "The summer of 69" takes me back to a very specific day of college, to a specific place, going through some confusing emotions while sharing that song with a friend.."Devil's daughter" , in as much as I hate that kind of music, reminds me affectionately of my school pals who were wannabe rockers, complete with a wig and an air guitar. :).
"Every breath you take" takes me back to the day I saw Sting live in concert, and "With or without you" has many associated memories- of the time I was leaving home to come here, and of the day I saw U2 live in concert.
Raag Mohana Kalyani is the only raagam left that I can at all remember or can recognize if played. There used to be this particular Tillana that my dad played on the tape recorder at home that I really liked. I remember being snubbed by my violin teacher who told me it was too difficult for me to learn and I should stick to "ra ra venu gopa bala" and master that first. I quit the violin soon after that, and therein ended my stint in carnatic music. Some day, I will pick it up again. But even today, I can play that tillana in my head.
When I first joined my current lab, five years back, I was the first student, mine was the only computer, and then I owned only two cds that I played on the loop in the lab, because I needed some sound besides the sound of me talking to myself. The cds were a compilation of indy rock tracks by local bands of this town I live in. I was not the most familiar with that genre of music yet, but sung along anyway. Those were the days I was learning a lot of things for the first time, all by myself in the lab. I worked long and late hours, purely driven by the excitement of all those new things I was learning, and the challenges of trouble-shooting and debugging. Every 2 hours or so, the background music would repeat itself with unfailing regularity. But it never bothered me- I was too busy having fun.
A lot has changed since then. My taste in indy rock has become very defined, and I would not tolerate some of that crap I listened to on those cds back then. Our lab has grown, brought in company, diversity in music taste, and we moved labs (twice), to much nicer buildings and now have a music system that blares music all day long. I-tunes sharing lets us listen to a wide variety of music from everyone in the building.
But even today, when I pop one of these 5 year old cds in, I automatically become invigorated and motivated to work, the songs (even the crappy ones) take me back to that dingy old lab, my lone self, and that heady feeling of being completely happy and excited and making things work!
Just what I needed today. :)