Monday, July 23, 2007

Saddest songs

Those of you who also read my posts over at (all two of you, I know...) have read that K and I went to see Rasputina this past weekend. The show was really, really great. One of those shows that makes you want to stop at the record store on the way home so that you can purchase the CDs you're missing (which in my case, admittedly is all of them, having only recently been turned on to Rasputina by K).

In the course of the show, they played "Wish You Were Here" by Pink Floyd, and I'm not too cool to admit I had to actively work to keep myself from crying. I think "Wish You Were Here" is one of the saddest songs ever, and I'm not even a Pink Floyd fan. I've never even tried to watch The Wizard of Oz with Dark Side of the Moon playing or anything. But man, that song wrecks me. I'm sure it's not helped by the fact that I wore the grooves off that record when I was about 18-19 and my whole life was a grief-studded disaster. In fact, when I stopped using drugs and started getting my life together at 20, that was among the albums that I declared "off limits" for at least six months (a list that also includes, Closer and Unknown Pleasures by Joy Division; Pornography, Faith, and Seventeen Seconds by the Cure; and Days of Wine and Roses by Dream Syndicate).

When I hear "Wish You Were Here" it brings me back to those years when I felt like everything was being ripped out from under me and everywhere I turned was death and loss. But I think even if I didn't have the association of the worlds most melodramatic late teen years to anchor it, I'd still think it was one of the world's saddest songs.

I got to thinking about it, and I've narrowed the list of the saddest songs ever to three. Along with "WYWH" I'd add Leonard Cohen's "Famous Blue Raincoat" and "Faith" by the Cure. I thought about "Caroline Says" by Lou Reed and a few others, but I think those are the top three. Though "Hallelujah" by Leonard Cohen is another one of those I have to turn off if I'm at work so that I don't start getting all leaky at my desk. Right now, I'm listening to Pet Shop Boys so no fears in that department.

What's on your list?

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