It's been said before and I agree wholeheartedly, that music provides the soundtrack of our lives. While on my morning jog, I heard Gerry Rafferty's "Baker Street"on my iPod shuffle sandwiched oddly enough between Humble Pie's "30 Days in the Hole"and Rick Springfield's "Affair of the Heart" (yes, I have Rick Springfield on my iPod, what's it to you?) and a flood of wonderful memories from my childhood came back to me. It was the summer of 1981 and I was in the first grade of Sarah Collins elementary school in Greenville, SC. Our summers were spent in the beautiful foothill mountains of Brevard, NC, where my grandparents lived. My parents and grandfather were avid golfers, so it was not unusual that my sister and I would go to the neighborhood pool with my grandmother while the rest of the family played a round on the links.
The pool's clubhouse had a loudspeaker system which broadcasted music from the local AM/FM stations over the noisy children splashing and swimming on those sunny and mild summer afternoons. I will never forget the first time I heard the smooth sounds of "Baker Street" playing against the backdrop of a crystal clear pool and the beautiful trees that surrounded the Connestee Falls pool and clubhouse. Keep in mind, I was very young and was only concerned with my Star Wars figures or tormenting my little sister by stealing the beach ball or raft from her in the pool, but that song deeply moved me then and continues to have the same impact on me to this very day.
Many years later, Gerry Rafferty's "Baker Street" continues to be one of my favorite songs of all-time. It is the perfect blend of that smooth atonal sound that was so prevalent in the mid to late 70s with it's instantly memorable chorus and saxophone. Artists such as the Foo Fighters and Rick Springfield (yes, two times in the same article) have recorded their interpretations of "Baker Street," but none are as wonderful as the original. Gerry Rafferty passed away at the age of 63 earlier this January, but his music will live on forever. Thank you, Gerry, for all of the great music and memories!