Music is a powerful force to many people, including myself. Like many of you, I’m sure, music has always provided a kind of soundtrack to my life. I have songs that will always mean something to me because they captured how I was feeling at a specific time in my life. Obviously, in many cases, that soundtrack has included quite a bit of Duran Duran. (Shocking, isn’t it?! 😀 ) Today, I was reminded of the power some songs have, for me. This morning, I had coffee with a woman who is involved in a political group that I’m the leader for. The goal of this morning’s meeting was to get this woman to become more active in my group. We had a good conversation and much of the beginning focused on current affairs both locally and nationally. The end of the conversation took a turn, however, as she discussed a family member who is reaching the end of his life. I was instantly brought back to a recent time in my life. As this woman was talking about her family member, I was thinking about my grandmother and my cat, both of whom passed away in December. Those feelings of grief were brought up to the surface in such a deep and profound way. After I left her, I drove over to my mother’s as I felt it necessary to be with her. As I stood in my mother’s kitchen, I was reminded of a moment that took place this past December as we were both grieving. This moment took place a few days after the digital version of All You Need Is Now was released. I was playing the album for her as I had done with all of their previous albums since I became a fan in 1984. We got to the song, Before the Rain, which seemed to fit our current state of being as we struggled with our losses. From that moment forward, that song has represented grief to me. Interestingly enough, a few days later, my family and I traveled to attend my grandmother’s funeral. The song seemed fitting there, too, as it was raining while my brother, cousins, father, uncle and I carried her casket over to her final resting place. Now, I highly doubt that my meaning for the song matches the intent of the lyrics. Yet, I do appreciate how Duran’s lyrics are typically open to interpretation as many of us can and have done what I have done with Before the Rain. We have added our own personal meaning to songs.
Another song that seems fitting today is Finest Hour. This song, I’m sure, has meant many things to many people. I remember hearing an interview in which Simon talked about how the lyrics refer to a speech given during World War II, expressing how Britain’s participation in attempting to defeat Hitler would be their “finest hour”, no matter the end result. After hearing that interview, I have always connected “fight” to that song. Obviously, the song could be used to talk about any kind of fight. A personal battle or a political battle. Today has also seen my political side come out in full force as my rights have seemingly come under attack by the leader of my state and more. Instead of rolling over and giving up, I am doing what I need to do in order to stand up for myself and others like me. I am fighting. I may not get what I want but I know that I will still be proud of how I will battle. Thus, Finest Hour fits my current mood. I will “take back the life that I want to lead”. Everyone can be sure of that.
I appreciate that Duran Duran has been there during life’s little moments, like today’s political and work related battles, and they have been there for big moments like losing a loved one. For that, I can’t thank them enough as these songs have allowed me a chance to feel more deeply and they have pushed me into action. I’m willing to bet that I’m not the only one who can say these things about their music. I’m sure that most Duranies out there have songs that represent their moments, their lives. No crappy presale and no political ideology and no setback can take that away from any of us.