Thursday, March 11, 2010

Music for the Hard Times

What do you listen to when you are sitting in a hospital chair for three and a half hours to have iron infusion, in the same ward that is potentially where your mother who was diagnosed the day before with primary colon carcinoma will come for chemotherapy?

answer: preferably not Leaving the Hospital by The Dreamer and The Sleeper.

Yes I was trying to relax and listen to my mp3 while having my iron infusion therapy and this beautiful though very bleak song came on.

I also was told my blood pressure rose when Lisbeth Scotts version of Be Still My Soul came on, this song is the best version of this sad but very soothing song (or hymn if you prefer) but yet again, wrong song for the occasion as the first time I heard the song it was used for a funeral scene in the tv series Alias.

I can't even sit in my room listening to music without looking around and seeing various candles and wondering, if one of these candles could possibly be one that I end up burning as a memorial for my mother. As soon as I think it my mind shuts down, the most important thing is not answering that question, not choosing a candle. Don't choose a candle!

So what am I listening to at this time in my life? Well some sad songs I suppose, but I have always had this link with sad songs, I need them, to help me feel, but at the same time if a sad song is beautiful - has a beautiful melody ,a beautiful voice, and a beautiful set of lyrics - it at the same time as making me tear up, soothes me. I call the songs that have this effect, My Rainy Day Butterflies.

Here are my favourite Rainy Day Butterflies:

Ooh Child - Beth Orton

The Beauty of The Rain - Dar Williams

On Saturday Afternoons in 1963 - Rickie Lee Jones

I Will Love You - Fisher

Where Is My Love - Cat Power

Stuff and Nonsense - Missy Higgins

I'll Fly Away - Serena Matthews

Hymn - Brooke Fraser

I'll Build A Home - Patrick Watson with Cinematic Orchestra


Wooden Arms - Patrick Watson

Great Escape - Patrick Watson

I Cried For You - Katie Melua (this will be me if the worst happens, 'when you went I became a hopeless drifter')

All The Wild Horses - Ray Lamontagne ('tethered with tears in their eyes' that's the bit that gets me going)

Into Dust - Mazzy Star


  1. Hi, I just popped over to your blog from Jaqi's and am thrilled to have found you. I think this is a brilliant idea - writing about your music in this way. I will listen to some of the choices I'm not familiar with and discover new sounds. I'm sorry you are struggling at the moment. Be well, be happy x

  2. I popped over to your blog from Heavens2Betsy - I'm in a similar situation as you with my mum being very poorly and having only just buried my sister in law very suddenly last week - here's a song for you though - shoud the worst happen - Thank You For The Days, Kirsty McColl - it might help ease the pain xx

  3. Sorry to hear the bad news about your mother.Hopefully treatment will work. It is good that you can find comfort in your music. I'm not much of a music buff but I like "Don'y Cry for me Argentina."

  4. Hi everyone, its been a while since I've been back, thank you for your support, I am so happy to tell you my mum has been given the all clear now, she does not need any treatment beyond the surgery she just had, and will be monitored for the next five years!

    I wish the same for you Fiona, and my very best love and positive energy to your mum.
    I am going to listen to the song you mentioned.

    Diane, the song you mentioned is my mum's favourite when sung by Madonna for Evita.