Tina Turner – Lets Stay Together

So the two big passions in my life are books and music.  I’ve been posting loads about the books I’m reading and other bits and pieces, so I thought I’d do a bit more on the music side, which will also help me post stuff when I’m in the middle of a book and haven’t been to any exhibitions..

I’m gonna try and post about my favourite albums (it was originally going to be a top 5 but think it will go a bit beyond that) and I’m also going to do a kind of my life in music.  I want this to be songs that bring back certain memories, reflect my life at that time or show my changing tastes and interests, throughout which the one constant is that pretty much everything I do is done with a soundtrack.

So. Back to the beginning.
When we were kids my mum used to work in a hospital for a few hours on a Saturday and Sunday night.  And this meant a certain routine.  My dad would drive us to the hospital, drop mum off and drive us back.  There me and my brother sat and watched TV, The Generation Game, Blind Date, Only Fools and Horses and other TV classics, or played games with dad.  We would get sandwiches (nearly always ham and pickle) and possibly crisps.
After the TV we would get ready for bed, and then we would pack into the car, sometimes with pillows and duvets if it was cold, and go and pick mum up.  It is these car journeys that I remember the most, for that’s where we would be listening to music.  What I remember the most is Private Dancer by Tina Turner.  My parents had it on cassette (not sure whose it was, but I would go with mums) and it was on an almost constant loop.  I remember the journey seemed to take ages, especially if we were tired, but later on when I was driving I realised it was less than an hour there and back.

Even now, when I hear Tina’s voice as she starts Lets Stay Together, I can picture myself in the back of the car, looking out into the blackness, seeing the lights as they cast a glow over familiar sites as we drove through the night.  Inevitably we ended up hearing the whole album over and over again, but Lets Stay Together was the one that evokes that time.  Afterwards I ended up preferring Better Be Good To Me, the mighty What’s Love Got To Do With It and I Can’t Stand The Rain.   I have always liked Tina Turner since then, and I managed to see her in Paris and at Wembley (The old Wembley, she was one of the last acts to perform before they knocked it down) and the memories tied to that song, mean for me, it’s as good as the Al Green version.

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