161: My So-Called Life
Know what I miss? Mix tapes. I've made many a good mix tape in my time. Now, you gotta make a playlist. It's not quite the same as a hard copy on a cassette which gets stuck in your car tape player. I remember one I was gifted vividly, by a boy I really fancied when I was about fifteen. Sadly, I didn't think much of his choices, bar the first song: New Order's Temptation. We never got off the starting blocks but I like to think it's because he was secretly gay. My first boyfriend made me a mixed CD - double CD actually - with typed insert and everything. I still got that amongst my CD collection, and that tape from that boy. Because, y'know, nostalgia. Not like I have a tape player or CD player to play either on though...
I really like music. I really like lyrics. This probably isn't much of a surprise given I'm known mostly on social media for my lyrical biscuits. Each month, I start a new playlist. I find it shapes my month, I don't listen to any other playlist for the month, but I constantly add to it as the month goes on. So, for my year round-up, I've picked out a few of my highlights and a bit of blurb if you care to read.
I'd probably just listen.
January: Majical Cloudz - Downtown
After a weekend with my university friends who hold a decade friendship and memories, including the ever so dizzy heights of living together in halls, being thrown off a night bus at St Pauls and no one wanting to follow aka hold my hair back, to losing a friend from the big C; the turn of events I was about to embark on, was not in our friendship plan. January was the month I became a pin cushion, and also when I thankfully binge watched The OA, where I came across this corker of a tune.
February: La La Land OST - Another Day of Sun
I finished January by going to see La La Land with Mama Acorn. We both balled. Life was HARD. I went to Secret Cinema's Moulin Rouge with Lady Literate for Valentine's Day, and laughed off life for a night. I got so drunk, but not as drunk as my mate who vommed in her own bath the following morning. I am SO proud of this achievement: she defo drank more than me that night but the fact I was responsible - so wonderful and something I'll always cherish. Yay me.
March: For King and County - Out of the Woods / Chainsmokers - Paris
It's a tie for March. The lesser known Swifty cover of Out of the Woods played at key moments when I was driving in March, namely after I spent a long wait in the Ipswich A&E department watching my very poorly Mother Mooncake wait to be admitted and be given all the drugs. It was about 2am when I got into my car to drive home and this came on and I had a little weep, I'm not ashamed to admit it. Mother Mooncake's recovery hang on whether I would be able to go to Paris with Lady Two Birds as planned since some time in 2016. Mother Mooncake was a powerhouse: she got better, I went to Paris and it was the perfect antidote to life watching a French wedding with my love of a friend.
April: Mumford and Sons - There will be Time
My husband and my sister successfully snuck my iPhone into the ICU unit before they left me for the night, directly after my operation on my lung. They snuck it under my pillow and Lord B whispered “it’s on airplane mode and open on a song on Spotify - don’t touch it, they’ll know”. And so I didn’t. And this was the song it was stuck on. I listened to it on repeat, as I went in and out of sleep whilst hitting the morphine. Every time I hear this song, I go from being in that bed, to recovery, to now. There’s something restorative and painful about it in equal measure.
May: Phangs - Always Been You
May was recovery. By the end of the month, I was thinking about baking again, I was losing awards but gifting Sue Perkins some LBP biscuits, and I was back trying to dance-it-out in my kitchen. Namely to this. (And Spotify tells me that this was my most played song of 2017, FYI.)
June: George Michael - Freedom
I was getting my stride back in June. We went to a wedding, I met Insta-peeps in real life that made me thank the Lord they came into my life. June put a spring-in-my-step that I had lost the other half of the year already gone.
July: The Beloved - Sweet Harmony
My mate Lady Peanut Irish, took me to Amsterdam. I giggled, I laughed, I SLEPT, and I realised why we spend three days together, alone, away from the world, every year.
August: Tom Tom Club - Genius of Love
My oldest bestie, Lady Literate, found herself without a home. So she came to live with us. And so August was probably a dream come true to our younger selfs who had always wanted to while away the days eating oysters, listening to Mariah Carey remixes, and being together.
September: Stevie Nicks - Rooms on Fire
We took a toddler on a thirteen hour flight, and survived. September saw me reunited with my Grandmother, and all of my other Malaysian family. It was humid, it did the weirdest thing to my hair, and I arrived having lost my voice, but it was a trip that saw my husband get so burnt he had to see the resort doctor. We're still giggling about that. Wasn't funny at the time, obvs. But the photos are epic.
October: Taylor Swift - ...Ready for it?
I felt jetlagged for most of October, if that's possible, and may explain why I ended up ridiculously drunk at my dear friend's wedding. Swifty saw me through it all, though, and in 2018, I'll finally get to dance-it-out with her at Wembley. Praise the Lord.
November: Cheryl Lynn - Got to be Real
When I got that Instagram message, and when we (naively) thought we had secured the deal, I put this tune on, to y'know, dance-it-out. It was only me and my small Mini B at home. She ran into the kitchen and exclaimed "DANCE MUMMY". She insited we put it on repeat. She still loves it. I can't quite bring myself to dance to it in the same way - yet - but I will.
December: Ember Island - Can't Feel my Face
It's a race to Christmas. It's a race to Mini B's third birthday. It's a bit "let's just get there and we can then laugh 2017 off. " It's not been all bad, but weirdly and unsurprisingly I guess, it's the shittier parts that have stood out. Why does life do that to you? I never get that. But fortunately, I have learnt this thanks to an Instagram message I won't forget and what opens this post: what is meant for you won't pass you by. Thank you for sharing that with me Instagram friend; I am quietly certain you'll read this and so, high five to your grandma and her wise words.
2017 Song of the Year.
Nothing soppy, nothing overtly emosh except this: thanks, y'all. Lady B customers, Lady B supporters, and Lady B folk. You all know who you are: those that really have been stella and those that have helped celebrate the everyday moments, the little moments, the whatsapp moments - I love you and thank you.
It's not a song, but it's been an ongoing running joke with Lady Literate. And because we could all do with that swoon worthy shot of Jared Leto. Merry funkin' Christmas.
Be good and bake well,