One of the things that occupied my time during the holiday break (such as it was, since I’m a full-time freelance writer) was the all-too-lengthy process of trying to get my office into better shape, and the reason it took so long – and, indeed, is continuing to take so long, since I have yet to fully complete the task – is because I have a lot of stuff, and when I find stuff that I haven’t seen or heard in awhile, I’m very prone to wanting to look at or listen to that stuff. This, as you might imagine, has a tendency to really slow down the straightening-up process. On the other hand, it also tends to result in the rediscovery of some great stuff I’d forgotten about.
In October 2003, I participated in a mix-disc trade, and my contribution to the trade was a disc entitled You Better Like It… It’s Permanent, a title which was intended as a reference to the second song, “Let’s Get Tattoos,” by Carter USM. It’s a pretty great compilation, if I do say so myself, but if you’ve ever obsessed over finding just the right running order for a mix, then you’ll understand that the reason I’m so happy with it is that I put way too much time in to making absolutely positive that it was pretty great.
Actually, I take that back: I apparently put exactly the right amount of time into it, because the disc still holds up 12 years later. It also brings back a lot of memories, but one of the most wonderful comes courtesy of a song by The Rocket Summer.
If you’re not familiar with The Rocket Summer, here’s a quick nutshell summary: “they” are, in fact, a “he” – Bryce Avary – and while I don’t know if the status quo remains the same a dozen years later, when the album Calendar Days was released in 2003, Avary performed every instrument all by his lonesome. He did, however, have a backing vocalist on a couple of tracks, and “She’s My Baby” happens to have been one of them.
Why do I love this song so much? Because I could’ve written the lyrics myself. The narrator is a guy who’s been having a rough time at work, he’s bummed out because he’s being let down all the time, and he’s obsessing about the past, which is only serving to depress him further. Yeah, that was pretty much me all over prior to December 1999…but then I started dating Jennifer Elaine Roe, the woman who would, in October 2001, become my wife.
Of course, less than two years after this mix disc was made, Jenn and I had an actual baby – stand up, please, Allyson Faith Harris – but she’s my kid. Jenn’s my baby…and even 16 years later, she’s still everything to me.
To purchase a copy of The Rocket Summer’s Calendar Days, click right here!