Always Something There to Remind Me
A song comes on the radio and instantly, you’re transported to a different time and place. Which song(s) bring back memories for you and why? Be sure to mention the song, and describe the memory it evokes.
Music frames my whole life. It has always been there. My earliest memories are of sacred music, so I’m going to stay there for this prompt.
We attended the Fourth Baptist Church in Minneapolis when I was very young. One of my clearest memories is the sound of the pipe organ. Not digital. The real thing. I love watching for the opening and closing of the pipes as the organist pressed the keys. The pipes stretched across the front of the auditorium, the biggest, deepest ones in the center and the higher notes cascading down on either side.
This was back in a time when children were expected to sit with their parents rather than to be entertained in children’s church. We were expected to sit quietly, to participate, and to create no disturbances at all. And that’s pretty much the way it was. Church was important, a solemn occasion. There was laughter, but the over-all atmosphere was one of reverence.
The organist played until the pastoral staff came in and stood by their chairs on the platform. When the last man was there, she played a HUGE chord; the congregation rose to their feet, and we all sang
“Praise God, From Whom all Blessings Flow.”
It was overwhelming. It was reverent, solemn, and emotional. It was heartfelt. It filled up the auditorium. Until the very last notes faded away, there was a sense of expectation and worship that I have never forgotten.
I rarely hear that wonderful hymn of praise these days. In its place, we’ve put songs that are simpler in harmony, repetetive in melody and lyric. Not solemn. Emotional sometimes, but just not the same. I miss that grand old hymn, and the atmosphere that went with it.