Thursday, December 17, 2009

My #1 Song of the Oh-Oh's

1. All These Thing That I’ve Done – The Killers (2004)

Buckle up boys and girls. We’re going old school today.

When there's nowhere else to run
Is there room for one more son
One more son
If you can hold on
If you can hold on, hold on

There was just no way that one little measly paragraph was going to sum up what this song means to me and why it is number one, not only on this list, but on my All-Time Top Songs list as well. I might look like a homer for putting a song from my favorite bands as #1, but what most people don’t understand is that The Killers are my favorite band because of this song. If U2 had done it, they would be my favorite band. If The White Stripes had done it, they would be favorite band. If the Electric Light Orchestra had done it, they would be my favorite band.

Why is it my favorite song? For three very specific reasons.

I wanna stand up, I wanna let go
You know, you know - no you don't, you don't
I wanna shine on in the hearts of men
I want a meaning from the back of my broken hand

Another head aches, another heart breaks
I am so much older than I can take
And my affection, well it comes and goes
I need direction to perfection, no no no no

Reason No. 1:

Never before (and I can’t imagine it ever happening again) has a song come along where EVERY SING LYRIC completely defined me and the way I see the world. It was almost eerie the first time I heard it because it described my mentality towards this existence in a way I could have never described on my own. Somehow it transcended my own comprehension about myself.

That’s a good song.

In the summer of 2005, I drove from Virginia Beach, VA to Harrisburg, PA and just left this song on repeat the entire time. From what I can remember, that’s about a five to six hour drive, so needless to say, I got to hear it quite a few times. And it wasn’t even because the song is so good on its own (which it is), it was because every time it played, I heard something new and discovered something new about it. It led me to think about different things in my life and the way I really see myself and this life.

That’s a REALLY good song

And when there's nowhere else to run
Is there room for one more son
These changes ain't changing me
The cold-hearted boy I used to be

Yeah, you know you got to help me out
Yeah, oh don't you put me on the backburner
You know you got to help me out
You're gonna bring yourself down

Reason No. 2:

In the fall of 2006, my buddy Paul and I had committed ourselves to working for free for that sports magazine back in Virginia. Despite our absence of income, we scrounged up enough money to each buy a ticket to a Killers concert in Philadelphia (ask me how much I miss having to drive forever to see major bands now that I live in a major market. Go ahead, ask me). We rocked out to the band’s albums the entire drive and this was going to be our escape from the pressures of our reality.

We got to the venue in Philly only to find a sign on the front door saying that the show had been cancelled. I don’t remember if we said two words to each other on the way home that night because we both knew that this was just fate’s symbolic gesture to us that we had hit rock bottom.

A few months later, we heard The Killers were going to be in D.C., so we decided to try it again. This time we weren’t let down. We sat in the very last row at the top of the arena, but it felt like were right in front of the stage.

The only song I cared about hearing was All These Things… and I was getting nervous as the night went on and they still hadn’t played it. They came back for the first encore and didn’t play it. They came back for the second encore and didn’t play it. It wasn’t until the last song of the third encore that they brought the house down with an epic performance of my favorite song.

I learned a very important lesson that night that I still remind myself of from time to time: sometimes you just gotta wait.

I got soul, but I'm not a soldier
I got soul, but I'm not a soldier

Yeah, you know you got to help me out
Yeah, oh don't you put me on the blackburner
You know you got to help me out
You're gonna bring yourself down
You're gonna bring yourself down
Yeah, oh don't you put me on the blackburner
Yeah, you're gonna bring yourself down

Reason No. 3:

In the summer of 2006, my Wife was just a good friend at the time and she was actually trying to help me chase another girl (love has a funny sense of humor sometimes).

My Wife and I were hanging out regularly that summer but there was still no level of commitment to each other of any kind. There was on Sunday night that I blew off plans that we had together to go hang out with the other girl – I think my Wife would have understood and been OK with it, but I was kind of shady about the whole ordeal (yes, I disclosed all of this to her a long time ago).

I felt so guilty about it, that I asked if I could take her to dinner the following weekend and that was the night it all turned around for me. That was the first time I saw her as more than a friend, and I really liked it. It was the first time that it felt like we were on a “date” but there was no pressure or anxiety because we already knew each other so well.

This is what I had been looking for all along but just didn’t know it.

The deal was sealed for me on the way home when I threw The Killers’ Hot Fuss album in the car CD player and we finally got to the fifth track and those legendary first few piano notes started to play. My Wife legitimately rocked out to All These Things… (she could care less that I was even still in the car) and I was a goner.

People have asked me in the time since when I first knew that I loved her and I always go to that moment. Sure it wasn’t the love that we share know and I may not have been cognizant of that emotion as “love” there in the car, but I promise you, that somewhere in the unconscious recesses of my heart, I knew it even then.

After only being married a few weeks this past summer, we got to see The Killers live at Red Rocks. Our favorite band at the greatest venue in the world. It was perfect. I don’t want to sound sacrilegious but it was a borderline spiritual experience and not because of the band or the song, but getting to experience it all together.

If all of that can’t launch a song to the Top spot, then I can’t imagine what could.

All These Things… is my by far my no doubt, Top Song of the Oh-Oh’s.

With a bullet.

Over and in,
Last call for sin
While everyone's lost, the battle is won
With all these things that I've done


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