Friday, May 29, 2009

Best memories are of endless summers

I was in Best Buy the other day to pick up a portable CD player for my wife, and as I waited in line to pay for it, I noticed something.

There was yet another repackaging of Beach Boys songs from the '60s, this one called "Summer Love Songs." Most of them were songs I've heard literally a thousand times over the last 47 years, but for some reason I dropped it into my basket.

I don't know why, but nothing else in my life evokes summer, the '60s and yes, high school, than the music of the Beach Boys.

We may all talk now about how much we loved the Beatles, the Stones or other groups, but I went to an awful lot of parties during high school where, when people wanted to dance slow dances, they put on songs like "Surfer Girl," "Warmth of the Sun" and a lot of others.

I don't know how many of us ever surfed in high school -- you probably did, Dudley -- but it was the California surf scene and the car culture that captured an awful lot of our imaginations.

It's funny now to remember that "American Graffiti" came out only six years after we graduated, but do you remember the almost perfect musical ending? The plane carrying Richard Dreyfuss flies off into the clouds, we learn what happened to the four main characters and then boom -- cut to the credits and the Beach Boys' wonderful "All Summer Long."

I've always thought it was THE classic summer song.

I'd love to hear your thoughts on others that take you back.

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