Sunday, September 18, 2011

Happy Birthday Hannah-Bird!

In honor of Hannah’s birthday today, I thought I’d list the top ten songs that remind me of her and why.
1. “Mustang Sally” – The Commitments Soundtrack. I got the soundtrack from the movie The Commitments when I was pregnant with Hannah and listened to it all the time in the car. After Hannah was born, she was a bit fussy for a while (translate to “she screamed for 12 hours a day for 11 ½ weeks”). One of the tricks to get her to stop crying was to play Mustang Sally, which is the first song on the disk. At the first note she’d stop crying, and she’d usually be asleep by the middle of the song. I didn’t use this trick more than once a day though – I didn’t want her to catch on!
2. “St. Judy’s Comet” – written by Paul Simon for his son, but this version is from Kenny Loggins’ wonderful lullaby disk, Return to Pooh Corner. Hannah probably doesn’t really remember this song, but I played the disk every night when I rocked her before putting her to bed and this is my favorite song on the disk. Even if she was asleep, I’d keep snuggling her until this song was over.
3. “Sweet Baby James” – James Taylor – specifically the version that’s on the live disk. When she was around 3, we listened to that disk in the car all the time, and “Sweet Baby James” is the first song. That summer we took Hannah to see James Taylor in concert at Merriweather Post Pavilion near Baltimore. She expected that the concert would be exactly like the disk – everything in the same order, and when JT didn’t sing “Sweet Baby James” she was not happy. Thank God he sang it as an encore – I was about to crash the stage and let him know that he HAD to play it or my baby would be heartbroken!
4. “Whale of a Tale” from the Disney Collection. There’s a verse in this song that goes:

“Then there was Harpoon Hannah
Had a look that spelled out danger
My heart quivered when she whispered,
"I'm there, stranger"
Bought her trinkets
That sailors can't afford
(Sailors can't afford)
And when I spent my last red cent
She tossed me overboard! “

Rick and Hannah used to listen to this all the time. She loved that the song was about her and that she tossed the poor sailor overboard!

5. “Get Out Of Bed” – I honestly can’t remember where this song came from, but it was on some kids disk that we used to listen to a lot. When Hannah was in high school and I couldn’t get her to get up I’d sing this song to her, very loudly. Sometimes I’d even try to get her to join in on the chorus. She HATED this, but generally it would convince her to get up. If she didn’t, I’d just keep singing!

6. “The Song of the Sabu” and “I Love My Lips” – from Silly Songs with Larry on a Veggietales disk. (Okay, technically not one song, but let’s just go with it.) We used to listen to these in the car, at home – basically anywhere there was a CD player. These two were particular favorites of Hannah’s. Another one is the “Water Buffalo Song”, which was a favorite the summer my younger brother, Michael, lived with us. He recorded her making up songs – actually one long song – and it was all about a water buffalo. He presented her with a disk from the recording session as a graduation present – it’s awesome!

7. “Two Feet of Topsoil” – Brad Paisley. This is a great country song describing how low a man is after his girl left him.

“Well, there’s two feet of topsoil
A little bit of bedrock
Limestone underneath
A fossilized dinosaur
A little patch of crude oil
A thousand feet of granite underneath…
And then there’s me”

One afternoon, Hannah came home from school and told me that she used the lyrics of the song to answer a question about the layers of the earth on an earth science test. How’s that for proving music helps with school?

8. I’ll lump the songs that make Hannah dance in the car together: “Hoe Down Throw Down” by Hannah Montana, “Sexy Back” by Justin Timberlake, anything upbeat by Justin Bieber. She gets her grove on, let me tell you! It’s fun to watch!

9. “Gaucho” – Steely Dan. I have to add this one in there because Hannah HATES Steely Dan. We were on our way to Knoxville to see my brother and this song came on. Not only does she dislike Donald Fagan’s voice, she thought the words were stupid, so we blasted it. Karma does hit though – the song was stuck in my head for at least a month and would not go away.

10. “There Goes My Life” – Kenny Chesney. This is a sappy one, I know. As I was following Rick and Hannah downtown to move her into her dorm last year I had my iPod on shuffle and this song came on. I cried. “Nuff said.

So those are the top 10. Hannah – I love you more than you’ll ever know. Every year you get better and better, and I can’t wait to see what the next one will bring for you. Have a happy birthday!!!

Honerable Mentions:  "Twilight" from Shawn Colvin's Cover Girl album - there's a line that says "Don't leave me alone in the twilight" and Hannah wanted to know why someone was leaving her alone in the toilet.  Also " Band on the Run" - which Hannah, Sara and Rick have revsied to "Ham on a Bun."



  2. Happy birthday, Hannah!!! Love this, Maryann...reminded me of the music that I loved when I was pregnant with Ripley, specifically Elton John's Madman across the Water, and Natalie Merchant's Come Take a Trip in my Airship...actually making me a little teary right now.