2012. Unwritten.

The Esplanade: Battery Park City

Harkening back to my previous post (come on, how often do you actual get to write “harkening back”?) about the produndity of language and words on a page, I was walking around the southern tip of Manhattan today, enjoying the new esplanade that runs from the Brooklyn Bridge over to Battery Park City. So beautiful. And it was the perfect day for a contemplative walk — New Year’s Day, sun shining, moderate amounts of people strolling, and a new playlist on my iPhone. I had just hit the gravel paths and foliage past the Staten Island Ferry Terminal facing the Statue of Liberty, and was relaxing on a stretch of benches facing the NY harbor when “Unwritten,” by Natasha Bedingfield started playing (Hey, I said new playlist, not necessarily new music). Now Natasha has her share of over-produced, pop culture, bubble gum music for teenage white girls — think “White Chicks” with the Wayans Brothers in 2004 and you’ll roll right with me — but strip some of her songs down to the words on the page and poignant becomes an operative adjective:

No one else can feel it for you

Only you can let it in

No one else, no one else

Can speak the words on your lips

Drench yourself in words unspoken

Live your life with arms wide open

Today is where your book begins

The rest is still unwritten

View from the Esplanade

It was a perfect moment, with just the right song — and the right lyrics —  encouraging me to embrace 2012 with a fresh perspective, with arms wide open, and begin anew. Hmmm, maybe Natasha and teenage girls are on to something. Or maybe I’m just gayer than I ever thought. Only 2012 will tell. But in the meantime, check out some of the music, the lyrics, the voices, and the songs that have found their way onto my playlist over the last year. If not Natasha, perhaps someone else on this list will inspire you in the coming year.

  • Christina Grimmie — Advice,  Liar Liar
  • Tyrone Wells — Pull MeThrough, Give me One Reason, Remain
  • Cary Brother — Ride, Feel Like You Make Me, Belong (favorite new artist discovery)
  • Graham Colton — Pacific Coast Eyes, Everything You Are, There Comes A Time
  • Ryan Starr — We Might Fall, Perfect, The One You Know (still one of my favorite voices — incredibly gifted)
  • David Cook — Let Me Fall for You, Fade Into Me
  • Rob Thomas — Someday, Feel So Bad, Sunday Morning New York
  • Maroon 5 — Moves Like Jagger (sexier every day. ridiculous)
  • Parachute — You and Me
  • Boys Like Girls — Two Is Better Than One
  • Kimberly Caldwell — Mess of You, Dsperate Girls & Stupid Boys
  • Owl City — Fireflies, Hello Seattle
  • Selena Cross — Warrior Spirit, Silence, Memories Won’t Fade
  • Safety Suit — Apology, Annie, Anywhere But Here
  • Stone Sour — Through Glass, Hesitate
  • Collective Soul — Staring Down
  • Leigh Nash — Between The Lines, Blue, Along The Wall
  • Grace Potter & The Nocturnals — Ah Mary
  • Andy Grammer — Keep Your Head Up
  • Michelle Branch — Everywhere, Loud Music, Breathe
  • Gavin DeGraw — Not Over You
  • Celine Dione — Where Does My Heart Beat Now, The Power of Love, Alone and, of course, I Drove All Night ( my personal tribute to Ann Arbor, MI, and my road buddy Ed Dziedzic — it was a “best of” album… I HAD to buy it… like I said, maybe I’m gayer than I ever thought…)

One thought on “2012. Unwritten.

  1. Hi, Alan. I’m Marilyn Lamoreaux, Jon’s mom, and I just want to let you know that I have missed your blog and I am so glad that you have reconnected with words and are writing again. I love what you write and your amazingly witty and tender style. I should have let you know that I missed your blog, but so many of the writers of blogs I have enjoyed reading seemed to have stopped (Jon, my daughter Annie, your brother Dave, etc.) so I just took it as a sign of the “facebook” times. Please don’t stop blogging again, and please know that you have a loyal (but too silent) fan in St. George, Utah who admires and has missed your musings very much!

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