Thursday, January 8, 2015

My Great White Whales

In the great book Moby Dick, the character of Captain Ahab is relentless in his search for the title character, a great white whale. His commitment is so complete that the term "great white whale" is often used to refer to anything we become obsessed with seeking and finding. When my son Will gave me a hand-me-down iPod several years ago and I began to collect old songs I had once had either on vinyl or old CDs, there were 2 old favorites I had difficulty finding. I have mentioned both on this blog before for other reasons, and I once owned both songs on 45 rpm vinyl. The first was an old youth group favorite originally recorded by Olivia Newton-John called Let Me Be There. There were dozens of ONJ songs on i-Tunes, but that hit from early in her career was nowhere to be found. I found a YouTube video, but my quest for the original recording went unfulfilled. But I never gave up the search. The other song was a late 70's one hit wonder by Toby Beau that we used to sing around the dishwasher at Quaker Lake Camp. My Angel Baby was an amazing song, but when I searched i-Tunes they had no listing for the band, much less for the song. Again, my search ended in disappointment. And though I never gave up the hunt, for several years I was denied my great white whales.

Then in December I again launched a search for my 2 missing songs. There was still nothing on i-Tunes, but when my search turned to Amazon I discovered they had added some new ONJ in their digital music, and Let Me Be There was among the choices. I was thrilled and purchased it immediately. One white whale down. Only moments later, after once again finding no listing for Toby Beau or My Angel Baby in their digital music, my search uncovered a rare and random CD called Hard To Find 45s of the 70s on CD, Volume 8. And there, at track #10, was my second white whale. I ordered it and it arrived just before Christmas. My search was complete, and the great beasts had been defeated. I was one happy camper!

There are few things that move me like music does, and even fewer things that can bring moments from my past into such clear view. Finding these white whales not only gave me a sense of accomplishment, but they transported me through time to some special places and great times spent with wonderful people. And I don't care who you are, that's a great day of fishing. 

Oh...and one more thing. Just in case you don't know that I have eclectic odd musical tastes, on that CD of 20 hard to find songs were 5 songs that were ALREADY on my iPod. But I did get to add Which Way Are You Going, Billy? and Kung Fu Fighting!!! Have a great Thursday, everyone!

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