Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Bruce! Bruce Will Keep Us Together!

Baby, we were born to ruuuuuuunnnnn!
I've been thinking about family lately. Maybe it's because Thanksgiving is right around the corner (gobble gobble what what?). It is the mother of all family holidays, after all.
Anyway, family. I know when I think of my family, I think of music. Do you play word association with your family? Seriously, though, I think of music when I think about my family. We're all music lovers. Growing up, my house was always full of music whether it was my mother playing Mariah Carey while we cleaned, baked, or decorated the tree (Always Be My Baby and All I Want for Christmas were the soundtrack of my childhood) or my father playing DJ after dinner (every night, like clockwork, he'd retire to the living room, load up discs into his 6 CD playing stereo and get the party started with Elton John, Billy Joel, Crash Test Dummies, Bruce Springsteen, Blind Melon, The Counting Crows, Stevie Wonder, and more - I know, eclectic taste, right?). 

This continued up until - wait, actually, it's continuING. What am I saying? It's still a major part of my family! My dad still plays DJ, my mom still gets that Mariah album on when we're decorating the tree, and my sisters and I are all extremely close with music. I've been singing since I was little but I also just have a great connection with music - it's wherever I go: the car, in my cube at work, when I take a shower, when I write, when I bake, everywhere! 

I love music that is sentimental (anytime I hear the songs I linked above, I get emotional thinking of my parents) and I love music that moves me. I love music I can relate to and I love music that packs a punch and hits you in the feels. It can be creepy when it happens, but I love music that takes you RIGHT back to a different time and place and you're so there that you smell whatever you smelled in that memory and can see what you saw then.

One of the artists above, though, stand out to me as if he were my family's spokesperson or even an honorary member. Who's that? Why, it's The Boss! Mr. Bruce Springsteen.

I can't help it. I think of Bruce, I think of my family. I think of my family, inevitably I think of Bruce. 

The man looks AMAZEBALLS for his mid-sixties!
I grew up with Bruce. I wish I meant that literally! He was always a staple in my dad's lineup at night. My mom and dad have seen him live numerous times and I have seen him live now twice (hopefully more to come!). He was so relevant growing up that I think there was a time where I thought Bruce WAS my dad and my dad WAS Bruce. I had a strange imagination when I was a kid. 

I like to joke that I've seen Bruce 3 times because, apparently, my parents went to see him when my mother was pregnant with me. No wonder I love The Boss so much! I was a fan in utero! 

Another cool story about my family and Bruce is one that took place before we all came to be! It was discovered many years after, but apparently my parents both traveled to see Bruce in New Jersey for the Born in the USA Tour back in the early 80s! This was before they even met. It's so weird to think of them in the same place at the same time without knowing of each other's existence yet. I wonder if they passed each other in the venue on their way to the bathroom or t-shirt line and didn't notice or, better yet, if they stood or sat close to each other in the crowd! So strange to think!

All that "what if" aside, he just has become a symbol of my family to me. I loved seeing him live with my father (although, my poor sister, Emma, got so sick at the show. I am sure she'd rather NOT remember that!) and I love that I have a bunch of my dad's old records. I also have two old concert tees - one from Mom and one from Dad. Yep, my dad's tee fits me. Yep, that means my dad was once my size. Aww cute little scrawny Papa!

Me, rocking the tee this summer and my dad, rocking the tee 26 years ago (yep, that's me he's snuggling!)
I know it sounds crazy to associate a celebrity to my family and my memories but with Bruce, I just think of so many nice thoughts, memories, moments, and bonds with my parents. It's something we have in common and something that really does bring us together. 

But seriously, have you seen this man live? Insane! He still jumps, runs, dives, and slides around like he was 20!
What about you and your family? Do you have a group favorite artist? Or if you're not musical, is there something else in life that unites you?