Music Caresses the Mind

This morning I found an old Bob Dylan CD. From ‘Blowin’ in the Wind’ to Mr. Tambourine Man’. The Times they are a-Changin’ and ‘Like Rolling Stone’. Iconic and beautifully memorable. Why? They take me back to the sixties. With songs, he promoted changing the view of the world.  Especially ‘The Times they are ‘Achangin’ and ‘Blowin’ in the Wind’.  The words are no less meaningful than they were in the early sixties. He sang for Peace and change.

‘Mr. Tambourine Man’ was and is my all-time favorite. When I play Tambourine Man I tend to join in singing, with a touch of Dylan’s accent!  Should neighbors hear me, they would close their windows and doors.

When I had a Jeep I had three music ‘tapes’.  Yes folks, tapes!  Bob Dylan, The Rolling Stones, and the iconic music to Noel Coward’s  ‘Brief Encounter’ – Rachmaninoff’s Concerto For Piano – 2.  The black and white 1945 movie’s storyline, accompanied by the undulating ups and downs of a romantic relationship is truly wonderful.  And one of my favorite pieces of music and movies starring Celia Johnson and Trevor Howard.  I am aware I may have described these musical emotions in my eBook. But writing this they have revisited.

What on earth does a motor scooter have to do with a Beetles song, Hey Jude? Well, it was the sixties!  In those days’ no helmets. the twisting the accelerator ready to take off to the moon….or perhaps the stars.

I was cruising down a main road singing ‘Hey Jude’ at the top of my voice. At least nobody could hear me because of the scooter’s engine sounds.  There was a small van in the outside lane. Before I could take an evasive move, the van literally turn sharp left; with no signals,  blocking the road. He was aiming for a house entrance. I hit it broadside. The next thing I knew, I was lying down on the sidewalk wondering what the hell happened. An ambulance was called, but before that, someone tried to lift me up. I yelled! My collar bone had been fractured.

I was taken by ambulance to the Accident Hospital.  One of the staff needed to remove my jacket and shirt. He lifted up the side with my broken collar bone; seemingly with a glint in his eye. Bones grated. Extreme pain. There was a smile on his face. Sadistic?  Fortunately, collar bones repair themselves in the same way as ribs. I was lucky. Could’ve been a lot worse. Those were the end of my scooter days. It seems my Dad was going to buy me an ex-Army Jeep, but when I had chosen a scooter and most insistent…….No ex-Army Jeep.

Where was I? Oh yes. Another favorite. Vangelis 1492, Paradise Conquered. It’s also available via Google accompanied by the most awesome video. I just watched and listened to it again. Truly amazing. Sadly, Vangelis passed away recently.

The first time I heard this amazing music was at Brussels Grand Place.   It has been described in one of my essays and also featured in my eBook.  A truly wonderful experience and never forgotten.

At this very moment, I have Bob Dylan singing my favorite track.  I could listen to it time and time again! ‘Hey Mr. Tamourine Man play a song for me, I’m not sleepy and there is no place I’m going to. Hey Mr. Tambourine man, play a song for me in that jingle jangle mornin’ I’ll come followin’ you…’

There is a musician on Winchester High Street, usually y the ancient the ‘Butter Cross’ and opposite a Caffe Nero, with a bench outside so you can sit and enjoy.  When he is playing I go up and ask him to play……Mr. Tambourine Man!  I bought his cd which has myriad songs. Pretty good.

Music has always played an important part in life. from funerals, birthdays, or weddings. Or just plain, happy, pop music performed by many different groups or individuals.

Travelling around, music can stay with you forever. It can spark off a memory. Connecting a sound with a memory in a split second; probably faster than an iPhone, which does not have synapses, let alone the acetylcholine that connects them almost instantly with sites, sound smell, feelings, and sound.

Music caresses, the mind, heart, and soul, taking you on a journey into the past thinking about the future when in the past. Dreamlike state of mind.  Music prompts memories and can take you back to a very moment without hesitation. Instantly. And the mind wanders.

One of the most romantic pieces of music (composed by Mick Jagger)  ‘As Tears Go By’, sung by Marian Faithful.  I do not know a guy who was not in love with her. We were all besotted! The words to ‘As Tears Go By’ are special too, I just watched a video of her singing this song.  Memories visited!

At the end of a musical evening at a summer school, we were all dancing the ‘smooch’!  A gentle dance with a girlfriend with arms over each other’s shoulders.  ‘As Tears Go By’ was everyone’s favorite.

Memories go way back, even before my scooter days or driving a car. What do you do when your car breaks down in the fifties and sixties?  There were no mobile ‘phones, but if lucky there would be either a blue or deep yellow ‘phone box. There were two motoring organizations that would come out and help you get back on the road. The Royal Automobile Club (blue box) and The Automobile Association  (yellow box). In those days, forget high tech. Motors were basic. Very basic!  Fixing is not necessarily a big problem. No computer diagnostics.

Both organizations rode motorbikes with sidecars!  The sidecars contain a repair kit. When one of these bikes drove towards you and noticed the rather nice badge on the front of an auto, they would signal! Just like an army officer.  Very special. Should you mention it to a younger person, a look of disbelief would be the reaction!

And so, the memories don’t fade but remain in the heart, ready to bless us with fondness, love, and joy.

Romantic Music? Marion Faithful singing ‘As Tears Go By’. Not necessarily a happy song, but the accompanying music, her angelic voice full of gentle emotion, transporting you in an instant to another level of consciousness, making you smile as you quietly dance around in a faraway dream.


Simon Lever
Simon Lever
Prior to his retirement, Simon engaged in software and services sector search and recruitment for American companies around Europe. He has retained the enjoyment of engaging with people from other countries and cultures. His energies are now directed towards voluntary community activities, journaling, and exhibition stewardship. He is a Featured Contributor for BizCatalyst 360°. As an Exhibition Steward, at the 1000-year-old Winchester Cathedral, he is responsible for guiding visitors from the world over, around the award-winning 'Kings and Scribes Exhibition', which includes the 900-year-old Winchester Bible. The exhibition introduces visitors to Winchester's historical significance as a former capital of England. Simon's journaling activities are published on BizCatalyst 360° and accompanying posts on LinkedIn, He acknowledges the inspiration afforded him by Carol Campos of Massachusetts: Life Strategist, Writer, and Intuitive Business Leader who introduced him to writing with feeling; from the heart. Simon's forté is creative writing; the accent on the natural environment, transforming feelings, emotions, sights, sounds, and scents of Mother Nature's landscape; hills and rivers and woodland into words, transporting the reader to the locations. Essays include accounts of his life in former days. Instinctively writing in such a spontaneous manner, descriptions become life-like. His often emotionally charged writing, whether describing a surreal 'Son et Lumière' at the Grand Place in Brussels to experiences acquired during European business travel. Journaling and Exhibition Steward activities are his key sources of inspiration and creativity. Kindness is ever more important, where he is a promoter of Shelly Elsliger PPCC's 'Decide to be Kind' Campaign. Simon champions Positivity, Empathy, and Kindness and has been described as a 'Beacon of Positivity'.

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  1. I know this is not primarily about RAC, Simon, but the very notion that a mechanic would salute me for being member of the AAA – the American parallel – makes me chuckle. My mother once had an old book with all the license plates in Denmark so if you met another car, you could look up to see who the driver was. Easier when car ownership was a rarity.
    These days we all know who fly their own space rockets, and a little closer to earth, the numbers on a place signals who it might be.

    • Hello Charlotte! That’s funny! Actually when I had a Volkswagen Beetle in 1967, when there was another heading your way, you’d raise your hand in recognition. Funny looking back. A book if numberplate numbers!