When I first heard reggae music, I was convinced I would never get into it because it didn’t sound like music to me. Then sometime near the end of high school, I remember watching an episode The New Music featuring Bob Marley that compelled me to go out and buy his best-of compilation, Legend, and it changed everything for me. The music lifted my spirit and blew my mind like nothing I’d ever known before. It was positive and uplifting and it made me want to get up move. It was an entirely new paradigm of music. I loved it and I still do. I didn’t know what bass was until I heard reggae music. “Rhythm guitar” meant nothing to me until I got into reggae. I eventually collected every album by Bob Marley. Survival, his most overlooked album is seems, became my favourite. I love every song on the album, but “Top Rankin'” grabbed me the most when I first heard it. It’s packed with intricate rhythms and the horns are killer. The whole album is like that.
Let the special man or woman in your life know how you feel by telling him or her, “I Want You.” (The Tom Waits cover by Holly Cole.) After dinner you can Turn Your Lights Down Low(Bob Marley), if you know what I mean. Then the two of you can lay there and bask in the purity of your Love(John Lennon). And the next morning while you’re having breakfast, you can read him or her some poetry, maybe “The Song of Wandering Angus” by William Butler Yeats (Jolie Holland). It goes like this:
I went out to the hazel wood,
Because a fire was in my head,
And cut and peeled a hazel wand,
And hooked a berry to a thread;
And when white moths were on the wing,
And moth-like stars were flickering out,
I dropped the berry in a stream
And caught a little silver trout.
When I had laid it on the floor
I went to blow the fire a-flame,
But something rustled on the floor,
And some one called me by my name:
It had become a glimmering girl
With apple blossom in her hair
Who called me by my name and ran
And faded through the brightening air.
Though I am old with wandering
Through hollow lands and hilly lands,
I will find out where she has gone,
And kiss her lips and take her hands;
And walk among long dappled grass,
And pluck till time and times are done
The silver apples of the moon,
The golden apples of the sun.
Remember that around the world version of “Stand by Me” that was posted on YouTube a while back? Here’s the same thing but with “One Love.” My first thought was, “How many covers of ‘One Love’ do I need to here?” But then I watched the whole thing — it’s a good cover.