When I decided to move abroad, I was so excited, that I completely forgot that I would miss the people I love. It only hit me when I was in my new home, listening to a song, and all my emotions emerged at once. I couldn’t contain myself and I burst into tears like I’d never done in my life. That particular song (listed below) was one of my special songs with my dad, and I couldn’t help but remember all those special moments we’ve shared together. I have a very cool relationship with my dad. He was the fourth of ten children, and he never got to connect emotionally with his parents because they were so busy taking care of all of them that they never had any time to bond. For that reason, when he had me and my sister, one of his main priorities was to connect with us and make us the happiest girls in the world.
As it happens with a lot of people out there who have a strong connection with their fathers through music, my story with my dad has the perfect soundtrack. Each of the following songs has an important and deep meaning, but more importantly, gives sound to those moments in our lives that have turned me into the person I am today.
Nothing From Nothing by Billy Preston
Black Magic Woman by Santana
Layla by Eric Clapton
All Things Must Pass by George Harrison
My dad has always been a huge George Harrison fan, and we would listen to his albums all the time, but this particular song would really help us whenever things weren’t going the way we expected or we were going through a tough time. Even when we’re not together, this song is our reminder that everything will pass eventually and that we’ll move on.
Baby Can I Hold You by Tracy Chapman
Bicycle Race by Queen
Father and Son by Cat Stevens
Hello, Goodbye by The Beatles
I told you a little bit about my dad’s background with his parents and siblings. Well, when this song was released, he was just a kid, and it was playing literally everywhere. He’s always told us that it reminds him of those days when they didn’t have much money, and his parents did everything to give them the best holidays they could. When he shared this story, I saw him for the first time as a vulnerable person with many emotions to share.
You Can’t Always Get What You Want by The Rolling Stones
Solsbury Hill by Peter Gabriel
Fly Me to the Moon by Frank Sinatra
La drogue by Ali Farka Toure
My dad has always loved all things related to African culture, and one of his biggest dreams has always been able to visit that amazing continent. He has knows so much about African music, and this particular musician has always been one of his favorites. This song reminds me of those amazing trips to the beach with all the family and how he would put this song right at the moment we arrived to contemplate the ocean. He would picture all of us standing at an African beach being blown away by the beauty of the ocean.
Sign of the Times by Harry Styles
Summertime by Janis Joplin
A Song For You by Leon Russell
Lucky Man by Emerson, Lake, and Palmer
One of his favorite bands of all time is Emerson, Lake, and Palmer. He gets like a teenager whenever he hears their songs. Every time this song played, he would hold our hands and tell us that he was the luckiest man ever for having us in his life. Now, the song isn’t that heartwarming (it’s actually kind of dark), but still it’s quite an emotional song for us.
Rejoice (Messiah) by George Frideric Handel
La del pirata cojo by Joaquín Sabina
Quasi una dona by Joan Manuel Serrat
Wind of Change by Scorpions
I sang this song at a school festival in the nineties. The theme was world peace, and each kid had to dress up with the traditional attire of a determined country and say something about it. I was Yugoslavia, and I hated it because I had no idea where it was and I thought that the attire wasn’t as showy as the other girls’. Still, my dad knew how to turn it around and spent many days with me listening to this song to teach me the history and culture of the country. I know it doesn’t sound that moving, but for me is a reminder of how my dad has always invented a lot of time to be present in each moment of our lives.
There are many more songs with a lot of meaning for me, and as time goes by, my dad and I add many more to our special list. But somehow these songs, in particular, always remind me of my childhood and how perfect it was thanks to my parents who always tried their best to make it magical and special. So, what songs remind you of your dad?
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Illustrations by Mr. Tokki