Soundtrack of My Life
-by David Dastmalchian
I read once that memory is like film editing. We cut and paste the sequences together in a way that make our past fit into the context of our present. I have this strange kind of daydream that feels like a movie trailer and I’ve been doing it since I was a kid. I look at a time in my life – or my life as a whole – and imagine it with few words but with a great deal of music. I change the songs often and the points of focus shift from day-to-day but I will share just a few of the predominant soundtrack jams from the life and mind of, well, you know – me.
1. Shine on You Crazy Diamond – Pink Floyd
My parents used to shoot super 8 films of us as kids in Kansas and my dad had them all edited together onto a DVD a few years back. There’s no audio so you’re just sitting there watching us all blowing out candles or learning how to swim in silence. Actually, I think there was some bad Vince Guaraldi rip-off jazz that the Costco or wherever people had dubbed in. I just popped in my Wish You Were Here and listened and watched. Perfect music to sum up so much.
2. The Rainbow Connection – Jim Henson
The Muppet Movie and its effect on my life are no small secret. I first took to a stage when I was 6 years old in Kansas so that I could strum a ukulele in my overalls and sing this song which says EVERYTHING you need to say about love and imagination. Beautiful, man.
3. Come Together and Let it Flow – Spiritualized
These anthems of my late teens and early twenties sum up the tracking shot of a dude with blasted pupils, sitting wayyyyy back on a couch in a poster-lined apartment in Chicago and watching the wax slowly melt off the candles. I believe that I was really trying to find some way to link up with the people around me and only inadvertently succeeded in isolating myself from them all.
4. Goodnight, Irene – Leadbelly
And old pal of mine used to do a bang-up version of this song when he would play around Chicago – but it really strikes up an image for me of driving across the long expanse of endless highway across my Kansas homeland. Those early memories of sitting in the back of my parents station wagon and rolling through the wheat-lined roads of the Midwest are some of my most cinematic mental images.
5. Smoke Gets in Your Eyes – The Platters
My mother had a “Golden Collection” of the Platters (one of those record sets you’d order off TV that came with special liner notes and fancy packaging) and I loved it. We would listen to the records on the old Motorola console in our living room and I would slow dance with an imaginary woman of my dreams – I think at that time it was probably Kristy McNichol or Justine Bateman. Or Lita Ford.
6. Simple Twist of Fate – Bob Dylan AND Joan Baez have versions of this classic jam that sum up the quick cuts of my early 20’s when I was hitch-hiking and riding Greyhound busses from Seattle to Asheville and trying to find my way back to Alaska while riding out the decade-long trip of simpleadventure and recklessness that was starting to ramp up in speed and severity, which leads to….
7. Stuck on You (Failure)
One of those songs that plays perfectly in the long, spiraling overhead crane shot as it comes down to face a guy who thought he knew what he was getting into and didn’t realize until it was too late that he was in way, way, way too deep over his head.
8. Some transition jams - Drowning in the Sea of Love (Joe Simon), Twin Cinema (New Pornographers), Wraith Pinned to the Mist (Of Montreal), Wave of Mutilation (Pixies) and the rising climax leads us to the beautiful moment of finding true love and a family and dancing in the grass to In the Aeroplane Over the Sea (Neutral Milk Hotel).
9. Which leads to that final deathbed moment. It’s a beautiful song but sad – but shouldn’t it be sad? It’s okay for deathbeds to be somber. I don’t want a marching band playing “Oh When the Saints” – I want all my loved ones crying and lamenting that we won’t be having any more adventures… for a while at least. Wish You Were Here (Pink Floyd) Yes, that IS two Pink Floyd songs on my trailer track list – so sue me. It’s my guest blog and I can do what I want.
And now I leave you with this – the trailer for our upcoming release, ANIMALS, which will be in theaters and on VOD on 5.15.15. For details on where you can see the film, please visit www.animalsthefilm.com And if you love the song as much as we do, it’s from a band called “Lavendar Diamond”. Go find and buy all of their beautiful music here: www.lavenderdiamond.net
Thanks for reading and THANKS to Nathaniel for letting me sit in the driver’s seat for a day. It was a lot of fun and I hope you didn’t get too many unsubscribes during my brief tenure. Now… back to your regularly scheduled programming!