When I was around nine years old, on a lazy day with nothing to do outside due to the rain, I relaxed on the couch in the living room and was watching TV, waiting for some show or the other to come on our then black and white TV, when the station started to play a filler, a little clip of some random thing to fill time.
I was dozing off when I heard what to me was the most beautiful voice I ever heard. I opened my eyes, and there on the TV was a blond woman, her hair parted in the middle, singing. Her voice for some reason mesmerized me and I had to know who was this woman.
I was not at the age where I started to think about girls as yet, so my attraction was totally to the beauty, simplicity and clarity of her voice. It was just something I never heard before, and that first song that I heard from her, “If not for you”, began my forty-year love of all music from Olivia Newton John.
I need to clarify something here. I am not what you would consider the typical “biggest fan”. I am life long fan of her music, not her personally. Not that I think there is anything wrong with her, but I never met her. I can’t judge whether I like or dislike someone, unless I have actually met them, spoke with them, and gotten to know them. I know very little about the woman and her personal life. I am a fan of the music, the voice, the sound and songs.
I stayed a fan of her music all through, before the “Grease” days, through the “Physical” days and right up to today. And last night I had one of my life long wishes come through, to hear her perform live. There is nothing that can compare to hearing someone sing live.
For any of you that know her music, the lyrics are inspirational, words to get you through. She is a cancer survivor, and on many a day that I felt lousy, or depressed, listening to some of her songs would help me through.
Last night was a culmination of forty years of appreciation for someone’s music and to see them there, singing live, and singing every one of my favorite songs was such a blessing. To hear many songs that got me through tough times, dance in happy times, and mark so many times in my life, that it just overwhelmed me when she sang one song in particular, “Grace and Gratitude”, I cried. I shocked myself. I don’t cry easily. I was so happy, grateful, just emotional. It was as if an angel was singing to me, about me. Her voice is so beautiful live, as one person behind me summed it up in one word, “perfection”.
Now I have finally done one of my biggest wishes, one that I really never thought could ever happen, and I feel so good about it. I didn’t deny myself this. I drove an hour and fifteen minutes through a wind swept rain storm to see her. I realized sitting there last night that I deny myself a lot of things. In a way, it is a good thing as far as spending goes. But sometimes you need, in moderation, to allow yourself things that you truly want , that your spirit needs. For forty years I wanted to hear her live, but always made some excuse like the concert was too far, I had to work or it was too expensive. This time I gifted myself, and my spirit is happy and fulfilled.
So, here for your listening pleasure is Olivia Newton John in a performance of that very first song that I heard. Enjoy.