I Envy The Wind

It’s not like people haven’t told me. Critics have been raving about Lucinda Williams since I volunteered as a DJ at WCVF in Fredonia, when her self-titled record on the Rough Trade label came out. I still remember holding the LP in my hands, and playing "Crescent City" every other shift. Other than that one song, she was a bit rough around the edges for me back then. Maybe now I have enough rough edges myself, but for some reason, her songs have taken me over during the past couple weeks. I borrowed a friend’s iPod recently and spent a sunny afternoon listening to "Car Wheels on a Gravel Road" and "Essence" at Highland Park and it was one of those times - a stretch of an hour or two when you are just in the thrall, transported.

One song, "I Envy The Wind," really got to me…

I envy the wind
That whispers in your ear
That howls through the winter
That freezes your fingers
That moves through your hair
And cracks your lips
And chills you to the bone
I envy the wind

I envy the rain
That falls on your face
That wets your eyelashes
And dampens your skin
And touches your tongue
And soaks through your shirt
And drips down your back
I envy the rain

I envy the sun
That brightens your summer
That warms your body
And holds you in her heat
And makes your days longer
And makes you hot
And makes you sweat
I envy the sun

Lucinda doesn’t so much sing these lines as just let them escape her mouth. It’s sexy and sad. It’s soul music. It inspired me to build a set of other wind songs (excluding the theme from the perfume commercial) for my show Mystery Train, which you can hear tonight at 6pm and Saturday at 10pm on WRUR 88.5 FM. If you’re already sold on her, and don’t know yet, she’s headlining the Grassroots Festival in July.



I Envy the Wind

I had a similar experience but I heard her record "Essence" late at night and when this song came on I thought it's so simple yet amazing because it's her song and you never heard it before - one can feel the song as much as hear.

music and memory

I have a handful of those memories - specific times and places where I heard a song for the first time. Music can really attach itself to you. Maybe you've read the new Oliver Sacks book "Musicophilia." He writes about how, for people with Alzheimer's, music brings memory alive like nothing else.