For me, the pleasantness of any day rests heavily on its soundtrack. On a day like today, when the drizzle starts as a chilly pinprick and develops into a steady shower, disappears for those few hours in the afternoon, only to return at that unfortunate time when you have to drive home at rush hour, the music that accompanies rubber boot squelches is paramount. A good tune can turn a sour wet morning into something happy. A bad song on the radio could change the demeanor with which you will approach the day and make you hate everything. Good music is like a good breakfast: your day’s more than likely going to go to shit real quick if you don’t get that in you early.
Take this titular tune. “I’m Only Happy When It Rains”, to me, embraces how shitty a day can be and takes it in stride. “So it’s raining? Cool, time to show those puddles who’s boss with these kickass boots.” Shirley Manson don’t give a fuck. She’s here to be happy despite the misery (or maybe because of it?). I respect that. With her strong voice filling my ears on the morning train, I can forget the distinct pungent wet dog smell permeating from the gentleman squeezed into the seat next to me.
Garbage’s alt-rock single provides a different vibe from something like, say, “Singin’ in the Rain”. Who wouldn’t be balls-out happy and ready to jump in puddles and onto street furniture like Gene Kelly after listening to this classic? And that happy-go-lucky lovey-dovey tune is a distant relation to something like Oh Laura’s melancholy bittersweet indie track “Raining In New York”. Rain doesn’t mean doom and gloom, even if it does turn the sky gray, even in this chilly Autumn weather.
I started this morning with “Ten Thousand Lines” by Electric President. Again, a sort of melancholy song whose lyrics don’t necessarily match its chill tune. But that’s a rainy day in a nutshell. The weather might be dreary but that doesn’t mean that it will affect the order of the day. I like the feel of my shoes stomping through puddles and big drops of rain settling on the top of my head. Cold wet feet come later, socks stuck to toes under the desk, and the inevitable frizzy hair. But who cares?
Come on with the rain, I’ve a smile on my face!
What do YOU want to have pumping out of your headphones on a rainy day?