The glovebox in my father’s car is full of records. Many of them are mythical albums, others are harder to explain why they got there, and most of them are CD-ROMs with the word MIX written in permanent ink. The MIX CDs were the playlists that me and my older brother made for our car trips, for when we went on weekends or on vacation. We put our favorite songs on there, some picked by my brother, others chosen by me and a few were my father’s favorites. Of the many MIX’s in the glovebox and after trying them out endless times, only two of them turned out to work: “REGGAE MIX” and “MIX”. “REGGAE MIX” is not bad, but the other “MIX” is the one with all the gems, all the songs from my childhood of which I still remember the lyrics even though I haven’t heard them for years. “Lose Yourself” by Eminem, of course, and SKA-P, Lax N ’Busto,“ Moi Lolita ”, etc.
It is true that some songs’ only value is that they are part of a memory, of a certain nostalgia. They are songs that meant something to me at some point and that’s why I like them. Still, the “MIX” could not be closed in a better way than with the song I have chosen for this blog. A song that makes the perfect bridge between my young self and my present self; between Eminem and Mac DeMarco; between my nostalgia and my criteria. The song that closes the MIX and ends the hour of musical roller coaster is “Take A Walk On The Wild Side” by Lou Reed. Perfect for looking out of the window on the highways or for those small roads so close to home. I guess the song was in the mix at my father’s request and I am very grateful that I did not insist on including “Basket Case” by Green Day or “If You Want Blood (You Got It)” by AC / DC.
Over time I’ve learned to appreciate Lou Reed’s song, I have read his story and sung the song live. And it freaks me out. I’ve always wanted to start a band called “Sugar Plum Fairy”. The song takes me to the road, to the dust, to “are we there yet?”, to the summer trip with my father and my brother singing the “tu turu turu …” as if we were the colored girls.
The Bird Yellow