Thursday, 4 June 2015

MEMORIES OF DESIREE


Have you ever noticed the way interrelated things tend to cluster together at times in your life? It certainly happens to me quite often. I'll hear of the same Bible verse being discussed by two or more unrelated pastors or radio preachers. Sometimes I'll be thinking of a song and then I hear it on the radio. Usually these coincidences are unremarkable. I forget them after a while because they didn't make much of an impression on me.

Not so with one of those coincidences back in June of 1970. Neil Diamond released a great tune called "Desiree." It received quite a lot of airplay on the Vancouver radio stations which I tuned in. If I remember correctly, KJR in Seattle also played it often. What struck me most about the song is that I heard it on the third of June. The coincidence of Neil writing about that date and me hearing the song that day stuck in my mind.

At the same time, Strawberry Alarm Clock released a song called "Desiree." I didn't recognize the band as they sounded so different from there "Incense And Peppermints" hit back in 1967. Even so, the fact that two unrelated songs should have the same title also made an impression on me.

Furthermore, I'd never heard of anybody named Desiree. The name sounded exotic. It also sounded like a nice name. That too helped impress the songs and the time of year on my mind.

Rock music has played a big part in my life. Ever since the arrival of The Beatles on the North American scene in 1964, I've loved that style of music.

But there were people in charge of me at the school for the blind who hated it. I was told that it was bad music and I ought to be listening to classical compositions.

I was rebuked by Christian elders as well once I was mainstreamed into the public school system. The leaders of the house church I attended called it satanic and even warned that I might be possessed by a demon if I listened to it. Nothing of the sort happened. In fact, the music I loved from the sixties and seventies is now considered classic rock. You can even hear it played over the public address systems in malls and grocery stores. Perhaps we'll even hear both Desiree songs played someday.

I wrote about the static I received regarding my love of Rock music in my second and third memoirs. Please check them out at my Bruce Atchison's books page as well as Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Powell's Books.