Thursday, July 30, 2015

How Music Motivates Me

Settle in and have your drink of choice at hand – this is going to be a long one. 

Way back in my very early days on Twitter, I was known to tweet lots of song lyrics, particularly on Fridays. Long story made short, I hope – Friday has always been my "unwind" night, at least for the last almost 30 years. My routine, so to speak, and it always involved cranking up my music – however it was being played. Part of the reason my kids are such sound sleepers is that they learned very early on how to tune out Mommy's music. Anyway, I moved out of my parents' house right around the time CD's became the popular choice for playing music, and landing a job at Sony helped me get my hands on a gorgeous rack system stereo. Which for the time, was top of the line, and even with my windows closed, the entire neighborhood could hear my music as if they were standing inside with me.

I've always been a music lover and I have a wide range of favorites, from the early days of rock to a lot of the music being put out today. I have my favorite types that I prefer to listen to more than others – classic rock, southern rock, punk/new wave, and yes, the dreaded Disco. Sorry, my formative years spanned the 70's and the 80's. Say what you will, every era had their crap and their classic gems.

One of the biggest effects my love of music has had is to inspire me to strive to capture the emotion in a way that often has less than 200 words. I've always been amazed at songwriters who can convey a whole array of emotions in such a few words, or drive home an extreme feeling with only a line or two.

Bruce Springsteen, to me, is THE one for me who tugs at my heart with just a simple turn of phrase. I can't even begin to think of how many emotions that man has stirred in me as I listen to his songs. Of course, the classics – Thunder Road, Jungleland, EVERYTHING on Darkness, Point Blank, No Surrender, Tunnel of Love, Human Touch – okay, you get the point, and I could go on for hours listing all the songs that hit all the sweet spots in my musical nirvana. Don't get me started on his newer stuff – I wish I could inject it! lol

Anyway, as I was starting to say before, many many songs I love give me the inspiration for my books. Or at least the emotional impact I strive to hit between the characters. Sometimes it's passion, sometimes it's anger, sometimes it's hurt. Sometimes it's a just-let-it-go feeling. I don't have a specific playlist I listen to when I write – I keep the ipod (long way from those "cutting edge" CDs!) on shuffle and just let it flow. I'm doing it now. And wouldn't you know, Bruce is on – I'm on Fire, in case you're wondering.

In lots of cases, the song I'm listening to has absolutely nothing to do with my WIP, the characters or the scene. They're just songs that hit my inner happy place and keep my creative juices flowing. For instance, Bruce just changed to Johnny Nash's I Can See Clearly Now. ;)

Anyway, I digress and ramble, as always. If you've done any reading of this blog, you're surely familiar with that by now! lol What I wanted to do is share a few lines that hit my gut in various ways every time I hear them. Check them out – do any get to you in a visceral way like they do me? After you read through, share your own favorite songs/lyrics that touch you in ways you simply can't explain, or maybe you can. I have a free copy of Warrior's Possession for a random commenter, so don't be shy!

So, here's my first list – and I guarantee, I can come up with at least five or six more! ;)

I give you everything I own, mind, body and soul

Skin and Bones
The Hazies

It's kind of an obscure song, but this is what I strive to make every one of my main pairings feel for each other, no matter what their ulterior and possibly nefarious motives might be when they first encounter each other. And chances are, they don't recognize that feeling for quite some time, even if it bites them on the ass in the moments after the first meet.

This love is killing me but you're the only one

It's Not Over

This is a tough one to explain. This affects both hero and heroine. Chances are the heroes have un-heroic motives toward the heroine, at least at first, and when this realization kicks in, it's driven by guilt for those un-heroic actions. Kills him that he claimed her the way he did, but he still won't have done it any other way, as long as he gets to keep her.

As for the heroine, she's sharp enough to realize her hero has reasons for being a dick, but she sees the hero in him, and knows he's the only one who can share this passion with her, even if she thinks a future for them is impossible because he's a stubborn idiot! lol

So tonight I'll ask the stars above:
How did I ever win your love?
What did I do; What did I say
To turn your angel eyes my way?

Angel Eyes
Jeff Beck

Many of my heroes ask this type of question of themselves several times. Chances are, they didn't treat their heroine very well to start off, yet somehow, she recognizes the man he truly is. Takes a few hits upside the head (so to speak) with the cast-iron frying pan to make him get it. :D

Just for this moment
As long as you're mine
Come be who you want to be and see how bright we shine

As Long as You're Mine
Wicked Soundtrack

I can't really explain exactly how this one fits, other than it draws on many emotions during the sexual encounters between my characters. Just for that moment, nothing else matters except the connection being made on both a physical and emotional level. They'll deal with the fallout when they have to, they just need to share their connection in the deepest of ways at that particular moment.

Here's some more:

And giving yourself to me can never be wrong if the love is true

Let's Get It On
Marvin Gaye

This is one of my all-time favorite songs ever, for a ton of reasons. The way Marvin used his voice to convey need and desire sends shivers along my spine.

Honey, I need a lovin' tender touch
Just move your body close to mine
Make everything alright

Runnin' Through the Fire
Beaver Brown Band otherwise known as Eddie and the Cruisers

That is just a seriously hot set of lyrics. ;) And since I picture Michael Pare as Eddie whenever I hear it is a cherry on top!

Breathe out, so I can breathe you in
Hold you in

Foo Fighters

Another seriously hot song – and it hits so many notes on my scale of true love and passion, not sure I can explain it. Then again, maybe it needs no explanation.

Nobody ever gonna love you the way that I love you
And I never want to see you doin' without

No Alibis
Eric Clapton

One of the greatest guitarists of all time. DH and I often debate who comes close to being on his level. This line is again tied to my heroes – chances are he is going to explain his actions in such a pathetically poor way, it will take until the end of the book before the heroine will understand. But he does it only because he loves her. Bottom line, The End.

Oh, you've got to love her, tease her
But most of all you've gotta please her

Treat Her Like a Lady
Cornelius Brothers and Sister Rose

These lines set off sparks for me because they speak to the physical relationship between my characters. If you've read any of my books, you know just how my heroes like to tease their heroines before ultimately pleasing them. Which they do in spades! ;)

I feel my temperature rising
Help me, I'm flaming
I must be a hundred and nine
Burning, burning, burning
And nothing can cool me

Burnin' Love
Elvis Presley

Yeah, say what you will about the hunka hunka lyrics and the man himself (yeah, he was messed up, but damn he was smoking hot, even in his last days), these lyrics are what every one of my heroes is feeling as he's making love to his heroine.

Okay, I'm wrapping it up now, I promise, and if you've made it this far into my ramble, I give you a lot of credit! lol Seriously, though, tell me what songs/lyrics touch you – no matter how and you could win yourself a copy of Warrior's Possession!

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