December 8, 1980.
I always dread doing a post this day, because it is the day John Lennon died. It’s hard to celebrate, and especially hard to listen to The Beatles and John’s solo stuff on this particular day, without a twinge of sadness and remorse and wondering what might have been. It’s so hard to wrap my brain around, and imagine a world without John and George Harrison in it, especially because the music of The Beatles is still so strong, vibrant and alive… and thankfully, all over the place, and the world!
But humans need to stop, reflect and remember. We need to mourn and cry. We need to hopefully learn and grow from tragedy and loss. This is what makes us inherently human, after all.
The sad truth is that there are several days the “music died.” It died on February 3, 1959 when we lost Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, J. P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson, and Pilot Roger Peterson. It died again on October 20, 1977 when the Freebird went down, taking away Ronnie Van Zant, Steve Gaines, Cassie Gaines, assistant road manager Dean Kilpatrick, pilot Walter McCreary and co-pilot William Gray . The again on November 29, 2001 (George) and 34 years ago today (John).
I could make lists and go on and on with days the music “died.” But then it becomes clear… the music did not die… it simply paused. People died. Amazing people. Icons died. People who influenced us, whose names we might not know died. Not the music. The music paused, just as it did 34 years ago.
So we can pause with it. Light a candle, say a prayer, shed a tear or many tears…
And then we need to move forward… and continue to laugh and celebrate and listen. For when we stop listening… when music stops moving us is the day the music dies.
My friend Julie posted a quote on her page… and I do not know who said it, but… “With the right music, you either forget everything, or you remember everything.”
Truer words have never been spoken. And THIS is the power of music. It can move the world… heal the world… bring us together… and damn, it can make making out so good! Just open your ears and your heart… and Imagine.