Music That Haunts
I lived for 4 years of my young life in an amazing town called Memphis, Tennessee. Memphis is filled with so much history, so much strife, so much tension, crime, hate, racial divide, etc… But it is the home of the Blues… It felt like “home” to me on a soft summer night. Running the hills of a suburb named Germantown. Chasing my friends with flashlights or swinging whiffle ball bats at the lightning bugs. Exploring the woods, and the city… The options seemed endless in Memphis.
My father was transferred back when I was completing the 3rd grade. I remember hating the large men from the moving company that took all my stuff. I remember hating everything about the move. I was living in New Orleans, my beautiful place of birth, and Dad came home and said, “Pack some boxes son we move Monday to Memphis!”
I hated the idea. I was a total ass to my family. I cried, I threw fits, I did not want to go. I liked my school, my friends, my life. How dare he?
It took me only a few days to fall in love with “The Mid-South”. I loved sitting on the river banks watching the paddleboats. I was introduced to Mark Twain around this time. I would often dream of being Huck Finn or Tom Sawyer. Jumping on a raft of the river and floating away.
Memphis…. A majestic place.
I often return to Memphis due to the fact my extended family lives across the Mississippi River in Helena, Arkansas. Memphis is the closest large city. My ex and I would book a room at the famous Peabody Hotel and drink vodka martinis while we watched the ducks in the lobby.
I can honestly look back on my childhood and say that my happiest time was those 4 years in Memphis. It will always hold a soft spot in my heart.
One of my favorite singers of all time is Jeff Buckley. Buckley loved Memphis like I did. One fun night of partying and drinking on Beale Street ultimately led to Buckley’s death. There are many accounts and versions of his death but the bottom line is this… He was drunk and drowned in the river between Memphis and Mud Island. The Mighty Mississippi is indeed mighty. I have swum in the exact location of Buckley’s death.
The last time I was in Memphis, I walked down to the shore line and played this song on my iPhone.