30 Day Music Challenge Day 10: Minsan (Eraserheads) and Good Riddance/Time Of Your Life (Green Day)

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In an effort to drum up some posting after leaving this blog essentially dormant for, well, too long… here’s me taking the 30 Day Music Challenge. It’s spreading well enough that it’s still interesting, and it’s relevant enough to my interests that it’s worth pursuing. I love music, and I’ve come to associate certain songs with certain parts of my life, and it’s a fun opportunity to talk about some well-remembered songs.

Day 10 is “a song that makes you sad”, and there are an awful lot that do. Today’s picks, though, focus less on sadness due to personal inadequacy or romantic BS and more on sadness due to wistful nostalgia in general. Goodbyes are hard, yes? Ends of eras are even more crushing, and so today two songs carry that weight.

I’ve praised Circus by the Eraserheads many times already (and there’ll be more), and it’s so difficult to reduce the album to just a handful of standout songs. If one were to do so, though, Minsan would definitely be up there. It’s at once sweet and heartbreaking the way the lyrics so, SO perfectly capture how people find themselves moving on from the heady, halcyon days of adolescent barkadas and bonds that never seem like they would ever end — but inevitably do, because life goes on and so do we.

Green Day’s Good Riddance (Time Of Your Life) was a similarly brilliant, if less familiar, song that sums up the difficult necessity of saying goodbye with a sense of gratitude strong enough to (at least temporarily) override the sadness. It manages to strike the same emotional notes as Minsan with totally different imagery (“photographs and still frames”, brilliant), underscoring the immense cross-cultural power granted by music and poetry.

I hate this day’s theme. Enjoy the songs.

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