A while back I wrote here about my relationship with music, and felt that it was more of a series of filthy one night stands rather that a true romance for the ages.

Listening to a random playlist this morning I was reminded of the time when I indeed fell in love at first sight and in fact spent the following years in slow lovemaking on a white fluffy rug in front of a crackling fire with Kenny G playing the high notes in time with my enamoured thrusts.

It was  1992 and I was living in Knysna in South Africa.  I went to the cinema, a ramshackle old place with the most uncomfortable seating, but working air conditioning which at the height of an African summer is a true wonder indeed.

I recall quite clearly sitting in my seat, and being early the projectionist had put some music on.  This was no chain, but a privately owned place.   Sitting there, as the music played, never had I ever heard anything, before or since, that resonated with me as much as the album he had playing that day.

You know that feeling, when something just resonates so deeply and perfectly that you feel like it’s what you’ve always been waiting for.  Sometimes you will meet a person, read a book or watch a film and it feels like it was made just for you.  Yes?  Well that is how I felt when I first heard ‘Blind Man’s Zoo’ by 10000 maniacs.

I listened and listened and track after track just left me wanting more.  I don’t remember what the film was that day, but I do remember heading up to the projection box before the film started needing to know what was playing.   The chap was so excited to share as much as he could and actually gave me the cassette that was playing at the time that I could take it home and just bring it back when I was done.

Even now, when I hear the album – which I still listen to regularly – I still remember each song like it was the first time I heard it and I am taken back to that pokey little cinema with it’s uncomfortable chairs and the gorgeous melancholy of Natalie Merchant.


Photo courtesy of stevepb @ pixabay