the music tells the story – sherry…

I love all kinds and types of music.  Growing up I was a singer in many choirs, even singing a few solos here and there – Yikes!  And I played the piano and by the time I was graduating high school I was thinking I may even major in music in college.  Well, that didn’t happen, but my love of music has never dissipated.  And I think mostly it is due to the memories tied to the songs of my life.  I’ve always heard that one song can hold 1,000 memories or a single great one and I find this so true.  And the songs of my life are all different and varied and hold so many memories for me due primarily to one individual – my dad.

You see, my dad worked hard while I was growing up and so there were many missed opportunities to share time together. But then there was the music.  He was an avid music lover and had the sweetest tenor voice of which I always loved to listen.  When he would pull out his old vinyl records and turn the volume up on his now-antique cabinet stereo, I knew it was always going to be a special time.  The world would just stop, I had his undivided attention and he would be singing to only me.  Sometimes taking my hand in his, pulling me up on his feet and dancing with me too.  I loved it.  I loved him.  I still do.

His favorites were hits from the 50’s and 60’s and Motown, better known as the golden oldies.  And he could match each singer note for note.  It was amazing how talented he was and I was always so impressed.  He would snap his fingers and his blue eyes would sparkle as his face lit up with delight as he shared this love of his with me.  He was as much about lyrics as he was the melody and helped me understand that the words were just as beautiful, even more so sometimes, than the harmonies and arrangements that would fill the room.

He wasn’t one for expressing love in traditional ways, but every note he shared with me floated directly from his soul to my heart and the love was felt.  The love he had for the music. The love he had for time together.  And the love he had for me.

And through these songs he’d tell me stories, the stories of his life.  Like this one.  “Sherry” by Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons.  Not only could he match the incredibly high notes of Mr. Valli and sound great doing it, but he used to tell me it reminded him of meeting my mother.  While her name is not Sherry, in this song the fellow is asking repeatedly for the girl he likes to come out with him.  He did just that when asking my mother out for the very first time.  He had seen her and knew she was the one, or so he says.  My grandmother used to love to tell us how when he met my mother for the first time, my dad came home that night and told her he’d met the girl he was going to marry.

But it wasn’t quite that easy, my mother wasn’t as taken with him right away and refused to go anywhere with him… or even answer her front door.  So he showed up persistently for several weeks every night after work and would sit on her front porch repeatedly asking if she would just come talk to him.  She finally gave in and the rest was history.  He did marry her and of course, I’m here.

He would tell me how this song even refers to a red dress, which is what my mom was wearing the night they met.  He spoke of how beautiful she was with her red dress and raven black, long hair.

It is a beautiful story and a beautiful memory I have of my dad sharing it with me through music.  These songs, this time with him, shaped our relationship and ultimately, my life.

Over the next several days, I’ll be sharing some more special music that my father and I shared.  I hope you enjoy my thoughts and memories and stories… and of course, the music…

Lyrics – Courtesy, Google Play

Sherry, Sherry baby
Sherry, Sherry baby

Sherry baby (Sherry baby)
Sherry can you come out tonight
(Come, come, come out tonight)
Sherry baby (Sherry baby)
Sherry can you come out tonight

To my twist party
(Come out) Where the bright moon shines
(Come out) We’ll dance the night away
I’m gonna make you mine

Sherry baby (Sherry baby)
Sherry can you come out tonight
(Come, come, come out tonight)

You better ask your Mama (Sherry baby)
Tell her everything is alright

With your red dress on
(Come out) Mmm you look so fine
(Comeout) Move it nice and easy
Girl, you make me lose my mind

Sherry, sherry baby

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