The Saddest Song in the World

February 11, 2008 at 7:06 am 1 comment

I think most people have a song which, completely divorced from the content of the song itself, moves them. It doesn’t matter what the song is about, or even if it’s any good; the context gives it more meaning than it could ever have on it’s own.

For me, “Summer of ’69” is the saddest song in the world.

Back when I lived in Amherst, my best friends were The League; Dani, Jon and Stephen. We hung out a lot, had crazy misadventures, generally enjoyed each others company. Then one day I found out I’d be moving away to Winnipeg, and it became clear that all that was going to end.

What followed was a golden summer where we were together essentially all of the time. I was happier than I’d ever been before, but the whole thing was tinged with a sense of melancholy, because I knew I’d be leaving soon.

One day Dani, Jon and I were waiting in line for a movie; we went to a lot of movies that summer. Dani had a new MP3 player she was excited about and was listening to it while we waited in line. Then, unexpectedly, she pulled off the headphones and turned to us;

“Here. Listen to this.”

It was Summer of ’69, by Byran Adams.

It’s easy to see how, given my state at the time, the song made a big impact on me. It’s about an incredible period, a period of good times (perhaps even the best times) that can never be repeated; the world has moved on since then, and can never be that way again.

A few weeks later I moved to Winnipeg, and spent the next few months miserable and lonely (I’d never been good at meeting people). I eventually made some friends, but it wasn’t until I went away to university that I ever became close to anyone again. For I long time I worried (but never really admitted) my happiest days were behind me. I grew past that feeling long ago, but whenever I hear that song I can’t help but be reminded of my last summer home, and the hard times that followed.

This has been an embarrassingly personal blog post.


Entry filed under: essay. Tags: , , .

In Which I Lament Disc Two, Track One

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Dani  |  December 28, 2008 at 6:30 pm

    You’re making me cry!
    We miss you so much! Come home soon!!!


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