I believe that music is the gateway to time travel. Is that a bold statement? Maybe. However, I’ve been transported to so many places old or unexplored that I can’t deny it being plausible. There is a mysterious little switch in each song that connects to the individual’s temporal lobes, firing at will and sending trillions of synapses dancing in one’s brain. Like having a home button that gets pressed without my asking for it, I hear one song and suddenly I’m back in the days of my youth sitting cross-legged on velvet floral couches in friends’ basements, feeling invincible and laughing at the days to come, or driving up the Ridge and gazing at the stars while brooding over boys and the world’s unlimited supply of shortcomings. There are a few artists that open that door for me – Chris Carrabba, Connor Oberst, or even the short lived 90’s rock band Moonpools and Caterpillars and Heaven. It’s funny how one song can feel as familiar as home even when hearing it for the very first time, giving me beautiful glimpses of simpler times or seasons of growth and healing.
I’ve really been enjoying Cavalier in Clay these last few weeks for this very reason. Indie folk singer songwriter Brady Sklar started producing music in his bedroom when he was 17. Perhaps channeling some of the emotion of that age, his music has been flipping switches left and right for me. I stumbled upon his stuff fairly recently but can’t seem to turn it off (Appalachia and When it Rains, it Pours, especially). And now I’m suddenly driving home from the lake and it’s raining pretty hard, but the sun is just setting beneath the angry cloud cover and there is a fiery ray of light hitting the drops on my windshield sending molten globes spinning into the sky. I’m upset but I’m also okay because I’m filled with an overwhelming confidence that there is hope for me, that I will always have a home regardless of where I am in life or in the world.
So what about you dear friends? Are there any songs or musicians that give you beautiful glimpses into your past or future or send you home when you least expect it?