Songs of Summer – Day 11
“Soak Up the Sun” by Sheryl Crow
(Words/Music: Sheryl Crow and Jeff Trott, Album: C’mon C’mon, Interscope Records 2002)
So I was sitting outside on my patio (read: concrete slab) reading (Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas) for about 45 minutes today. When I came inside, I realized that I had gotten a little bit pinker. Ho hum. Ten hours later, when I changed to go out, I noticed that I got a LOT pinker. Again, ho hum. Why? Because I know that this new coloring on my otherwise pasty white body will be gone in a couple days. I will perpetually be the ghost white guy who looks like he spends his entire day doing something silly and pointless - like blogging! So I don’t have much of an understanding of how some people become “sunworshippers” and spend every waking hour outside working on their tan because I have never really been one to successfully “Soak Up the Sun” (how’s that for a segue?).
And that lack of understanding stood in the way of my appreciation of this Sheryl Crow song. I hear “soak up the sun” and instantly think sunbathing. However, the song is more about how people have differing views on happiness and success. The persona she’s singing as in the song (and yes, we can assume it’s a persona because Crow doesn’t have a “crappy job” and probably does have digital tv) doesn’t have a lot of material items but she does have an appreciation for the simpler things in life. She seems generally optimistic as opposed to some of the other people she encounters and this is most clearly shown in the line “I’m looking up, you’re looking down.” She keeps it simple and finds appreciation in everyday activities and events. And I feel that this really exemplifies Crow’s theory on music in general: she doesn’t do anything spectacular (not a flashy guitar player, no Beyonce-esque vocals) but she writes and performs unique and catchy songs. She soaks up the sun not because she’s a “sunworshipper” who feels that she needs to look a certain way, but rather because it’s simple and free and, even though I know it will fade, I will be out again not because I want to look a certain way, but because it’s something I don’t get to do very often.