Wednesday, July 31, 2013

"Knights of Shame"

“Knights of Shame” by AWOLNATION: Released in 2011, it was completely new to me two months ago. A song that clocks in at almost 15 minutes, but ironically is never long enough—it ends way too quickly. It surprised me with its twists and turns and builds and crescendos. It impressed me with its transitions, yet it progressed in a way that felt right to my listening ears and listening mind. The song sounds and the steady rhythm turns into a smiling face and two hands that excitedly pull me off my couch and across my living room floor, my kitchen floor, my hallway, every time I play it. It's not tangible...just sound waves...yet I feel quite certain that it's made a tattoo-like imprint on my mind, just as other songs have in the past. (Perhaps my brain is completely tattooed, at this point, with song impressions!) The words are strong and the acoustic guitar is sweet and the intensity is infectious and the driving beat pushes it all forward like a story. It came boldly up to my ears and crawled inside my mind with the confidence that it would make me really, really delighted to hear it. It was right--I was delighted. There is nothing hesitant about the Knights of Shame who bring energy to an otherwise lifeless living room or dance floor alike.

This song, like many others, changed me, in a way. I don’t like to throw the word “epic” around, but I would throw it around all day long to do “Knights of Shame” some justice. In whatever way a song can impact one’s quality of life, this song impacted me into next year...or somewhere even farther...I’m not quite sure yet.

I love the way that the discovery of a new song adds a new dimension to my mind’s concepts of music, emotion, joy and life. I love the way a new song changes me—changes my outlook on life, heightens my expectations of what music can do, and refreshes my repertoire by providing me with a new sequence and combination of sounds to love, enjoy and be inspired by. After all, what impacts and inspires us, in turn, becomes a part of the inspirations we create.

I will be forever grateful to my cousin and her husband, who had asked me to compile some music for their wedding and reception. They had chosen “Knights of Shame” to be the last song of the night, which is how I came to know it. At my cousin’s wedding, when “Knights of Shame” was played to end the celebration, the group on the dance floor danced with so much passion and joy, and the fullness of the moment will probably stay with me forever. I will be forever grateful to my cousin for introducing me to this song. 

This is me, at my cousin's wedding, totally in the zone when we were dancing to "Knights of Shame."