Travel and Music || The sense of a journey in world's music

Music, Travel, 90s Songs, 80s Songs, 70s Songs, Rock and Roll, Michael Learns to Rock, Europe, The Final Countdown, Enigma, Return to Innocence

I have talked a lot about the theme of travel and journey in Indian music. However, travel is a common theme across the world. It is not only about going from one place to the other. It is also about getting from one state of mind to the other, from one point in life to the other, from one spiritual plane to the other. And all of these forms of travel, have found an expression in music and art. Music is the form of art that I most relate to and that too it is mostly the songs, the lyrics. So here are some of my favorite international songs that are odes to some or the other form of travel.

Someday, Someway - MLTR

This is my favorite of all MLTR songs - followed closely by "Breaking My Heart". The outdoorsy video shot on a beach, the mailman delivering a letter, the abstract concept of waves carrying voices, all make it a perfect travel song. And then to talk of a future of togetherness - well, it is really a dreamy number. My favorite lines from the song:

The love we had together
Just fades away in time
And now you've got your own world
And I guess I've got mine
But the passion that you planted
In the middle of my heart
Is a passion that will never stop 

La Isla Bonita - Madonna

Another absolute favorite - this beautiful foot-tapping, peppy number talks of a Utopian Island of San Pedro and of all the innocence and beauty that it represents. It talks of love, of beauty, of sun and sunrays, and samba beats. Following are my favorite lines from the song:

I want to be where the sun warms the sky
When it's time for siesta you can watch them go by
Beautiful faces, no cares in this world
Where a girl loves a boy, and a boy loves a girl
Last night I dreamt of San Pedro
It all seems like yesterday, not far away
Tropical the island breeze
All of nature wild and free
This is where I long to be
La isla bonita
And when the samba played
The sun would set so high
Ring through my ears and sting my eyes
Your Spanish lullaby

Return to Innocence - Enigma

This is the song of my teenage - I remember watching it umpteen amount of times on MTV, and it used to air several times during a day. the entire video, apart from the first few seconds, is in reverse and is aesthetically very well done. Also a chant by Amis people, titled "Elders Drinking Song" is repeated throughout. Following are my favorite lines from the song:

Don't be afraid to be weak
Don't be too proud to be strong
Just look into your heart my friend
That will be the return to yourself
The return to innocence

The Final Countdown - Europe

The song that inspired "Mere Rang Mein Rangne Waali" from the movie Maine Pyaar Kiya is quite unique in lyrics and music. For one, it talks about space travel, and I have tried and tried to search for a deeper meaning to the lyrics, but failed. It seems the song says exactly what it wants to say. My favorite lines from the song:

We're leavin' together
But still it's farewell
And maybe we'll come back
To Earth, who can tell?
I guess there is no one to blame
We're leaving ground (leaving ground)
Will things ever be the same again?
It's the final countdown
The final countdown

Living Next Door to Alice - Daniel o' Donnell

This video, without the added profanity "Alice! Who the F*** is Alice?", is quite amazing to watch, once you get over the initial awkwardness of the lead singer trying to express emotions in a close-up. I have nothing against the number with the profanity - in fact I quite enjoy that too. The song is simple and unpretentious. And the lyrics are quite cool. It talks about missed chances and people moving away from each other. It is about unrequited love, and unconfessed emotions. Quite lovely number actually. And once you listen to it a couple of times, you realize that it talks of not one but two unrequited loves. That discovery is quite amazing. My favorite lines from the song:

Grew up together, two kids in the park
Carved our initials deep in the bark me and Alice
Now she walks to the door, with her head held high
Just for a moment, I caught her eye
As the big limousine pulled slowly out of Alice's drive
Oh, I don't know why she's leaving, or where she's gonna go
I guess she's got her reasons but I just don't want to know
'Cause for twenty four years I've been living next door to Alice
Twenty four years, just waitin' for a chance
To tell her how I'm feeling, maybe get a second glance
Now I've gotta get used to not living next door to Alice 

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