My teen years were in the late seventies and the first half of the eighties, while my daughter’s teens were in the second half of the nineties. My parents always had the radio on, or played there cassette tapes, and when I was a parent, I did the same — radio on, cassette tapes and later CD’s. Oh, and M-TV. There are lots of songs from the nineties I still love listening to.
Macarena — Los del Rio
Oh the fun we had when my kids were younger and this song played on the radio. So many people, still today, the moment they here Macarena start doing the dance, even if they only do the arms part. This song breathes energy and might be one of the most known songs from the nineties, but my fondest memories of it is doing it with my kids, and the fun and laughter we had with it. In my mind’s eye I still see the wobbly legs of my son trying to follow the dance movements of his five-year older sister.
What is love — Haddaway
Every time I hear this song, it takes me back to 1993. That was the year I fell in love and had a relationship with a man four years my junior, and I thought ‘this is it’. I thought we would be together forever. This was also the year in which I lived in Pretoria, on a military base, and frequently visited the social center there, where there was a place for the kids to play or watch television, to listen to music, to just enjoy themselves, and on nice summer days or evenings, to swim in the outside pool. They had the time of their lives there, while us single moms came together for a cup of coffee or a drink at the bar.
This Haddaway song played there a lot, and the title was something I thought about a lot as towards the end of 1993 I realized the relationship might not be forever. This song became symbol of the freedom I knew before I ended up in a horrible relationship with a married man, an maybe even of the freedom I found again later in the nineties. I don’t hear it much nowadays, but if I do, it never fails to transport me back to 1993.
You’re A Woman – Bad Boys Blue
Also in 1993, and with the man I talked about above, I went to my very first live concert. I absolutely loved the music of Bad Boys Blue, a German group, and which Master T says it sounds the same as Modern Talking, which I guess is about right. Anyway, seeing them live was absolutely wonderful, even though I didn’t like the fact that people kept on pushing up against me, and I felt a bit frightened in the crowd as people from the back kept on pushing forward.
Funny enough, if today you ask me which song of them I like best, I won’t be able to come up with one single title. I had to listen to this song You’re A Woman, and it was only with the chorus that I recognized it, and suddenly I was right back there, to the times the cassette tapes of Bad Boys Blue (which I still have) played on my car radio.
Joyride — Roxette
Another tape (when the CD came out I bought it too) that played over and over and over on my car radio and at home was Joyride by Roxette. Not only the song, but the entire album.
My kids and I frequently made road trips, driving from Cape Town to Bloemfontein (1004 kilometers) and the next day onwards to Johannesburg (another 397 kilometers), and when we did, music was on all the time. Roxette played over and over again, and when they weren’t sleeping, they sang along, especially my daughter. Up to today, when we hear Roxette, it only takes a look between my daughter and me and we know. We remember. I think the songs of Roxette is very much a symbol of the difficult paths we walked to get to the happy places where we are today, and it also symbolizes the bond between my daughter and me.
When Gun-Marie Fredriksson passed away in December 2019, my daughter sent me a message to share the news. Even though most of my life can’t be described as a joyride, Roxette, and especially the Joyride album, will forever hold a special place in my heart.
Earth Song — Michael Jackson
Last but not least, the Earth Song…
In the socially conscious track, Jackson issues a wakeup-call about the dire situations that mankind has caused and is facing, ranging from war to devastation to animals and earth itself. The song reveals itself to be highly spiritual at the end where Jackson calls on people to remember the earth is their inheritance from God via their ancestor Abraham.~ Wikipedia
My mom used to say that the earth takes care of itself, that its why natural disasters happen, and I have heard many people say that this pandemic is another way of the earth taking care of itself.
This song always brings tears to my eyes, and the deeper meaning never is lost on me. It evoked deep feelings back in the nineties, but hearing it now, in these times we live in, intensifies those feelings.
I truly believe it’s true. The earth does take care of itself.
© Rebel’s Notes
Image from YouTube