Do you ever wish you could go back in time and experience something for the first time all over again?
I often find myself listening to music in my car or through my headphones and wishing I could relive the feeling I had when I heard a particular song for the first time.
The song that stirs up that desire the most when I listen to it now is “Sam’s Town,” the title track from The Killers’ sophomore album.
Perhaps it would be more accurate of me to say I would love to relive the feeling of listening to that album as a whole for the first time, as the album, to me, flows as one cohesive unit from song to song.
But that song, in particular, takes me back to the fall of 2006.
The Killers immediately became my favorite band with their critically acclaimed debut album, “Hot Fuss.”
In the summer of 2006, they released an absolute rocker of a lead single for their upcoming second album. That song, “When You Were Young,” remains one of my favorites off the “Sam’s Town” album and one of my favorite songs to experience in a live setting.
I distinctly recall sitting in my sister’s kitchen in St. Louis, browsing the internet when I decided to visit The Killers’ website, stumbling upon a teaser for “When You Were Young.”
I sat and listened to the teaser over and over again, awaiting its release.
That song built my anticipation for the rest of the album, and I eagerly waited for the rest of the album to drop.
Finally, that fall, the album was released.
I remember waking up early the morning the album was to be released so I could download it from iTunes and burn it onto a CD and download it onto my iPod shuffle.
The moment I hit play, Brandon Flowers’ synth pads kicked in, sending a chill throughout my body and grabbing my full attention, almost as if someone reached out, grabbed me and shook me.
“Sam’s Town” the song confirmed what “When You Were Young” had hinted at – that The Killers had shifted from a British sound on “Hot Fuss” to a more Americana sound on the second album.
I think about that first listen to “Sam’s Town” almost every time I hear the song now. And while I always wish I could go back and experience that feeling again, it also amazes me how long ago that was.
It is almost 11 years ago now that I first listened to that song, yet I can remember it like it was yesterday.
So much has changed in those 11 years.
I’ve gone from downloading songs and burning them onto CDs and loading them onto my first-generation iPod shuffle to only storing my music on my iPhone 6.
I’ve also grown from a first-semester senior in high school unsure of what my future would hold to a 28-year-old adult living in the real world.
And while there may be aspects of my current life that don’t match up to what my 17-year-old self had envisioned for my future, I wouldn’t change anything.
It’s funny how I can remember exactly how I felt listening to a certain song 11 years ago, but can’t remember how I thought, at that time, my life would play out.
I’m sure I had grand plans of having a high profile job in a big city.
But, rarely do our plans work out exactly like we think. Life comes with various twists and turns, any of which can set us off down a different path.
My advice to the upcoming senior class would be this: Dream big, set high goals, but don’t be disappointed if life takes you down a different path than what you envisioned.
Life is a journey, so enjoy the adventure.
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Twitter – @scottvicker
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