Monday, May 12, 2008

The Music Of Our Lives

People whose job it is to treat the elderly have determined that music therapy can help greatly reduce stress in many Alzheimer's patients. Some researchers argue that familiar songs from their past-- especially from the time in their late teens/early 20's-- are particularly helpful.

I have to wonder, what are the implications for the middle-aged folks of my generation? In 40 years, will some burly, under-paid, nurse's aid try to force feed me pudding while I to listen to Frankie Goes To Hollywood?

What if the well-meaning nursing home staff doesn't pick songs from the era I actually like? What if they try to calm me by playing "Walk Like An Egyptian," "Rock Me Amadeus" or "Safety Dance?" What if they insist on tying me to the bed and playing Kajagoogoo's Greatest Hits over and over again? Kajagoogoo only had one hit! How do they expect me to relax?!

So, I have decided that while I am still of sound mind and body, I will prepare for my not-so-golden years by making an Alzheimer's mix tape.

I will create my own compilation of tunes from the '80's that I am certain will bring me comfort when I'm in my 80's.. I'll concentrate-- as the experts suggest-- on the mid-1980's, from ages 18-23... voting to marriage.

Some of the songs I'll include are "The Glamorous Life" Sheila E, "In My House" Mary Jane Girls, "I Didn't Mean To Turn You On" Robert Palmer, "Word Up" Cameo, "Something So Strong" Crowded House, "Wishing Well" Terence Trent D'Arby and "Overkill" by Men At Work.

I'll add any song by XTC and Squeeze... Prince and the Revolution but not Prince without the Revolution... The Talking Heads and Elvis Costello... The B-52's but not "Rock Lobster."

No John Cougar Mellencamp, no Guns 'N Roses and no Wham/George Michael. No Kenny Loggins, no Brian Adams and definitely no Madonna.

Gosh, I'm feeling more serene already. And I have a hankering for some pudding.

Maybe if I'm lucky, Men At Work's Colin Hay will be a resident at the same retirement home and he'll have just enough memory to crank out a kick-ass acoustic version of one of his many hits.

1 comment:

Don Lewis said...

Geez! What a youngster! I'm sure glad my rare moments of lucidity will be filled with pre-disco 70's stuff.