Think about your favorite album of all-time.
From lyrics and liner notes to catchy choruses and amazing guitar solos.
Now, think about the memories attached to each track on the album.
That road trip you wish never ended. The youth group church van. That one time you were grilling out with friends.
A lifetime of firsts took place with that revolution of ten to twelve tracks.
If you’re older, maybe it was vinyl (or eight-track). Slightly less old, a cassette tape deck with worn rewind buttons from playing the favorites again and again. Even newer folks, a compact disc with scratches all over the disc not because you weren’t careful with your favorite but loaning it to that one careless joker caused the disc harm and now it skips every time. Millenials & beyond, maybe the mp3s and iTunes and streaming gadgets have profiled your favorites as a result of playing the same album tracks so many freakin’ times. Regardless, we all have the album in mind and we know the track progression like we know our own souls.
For me, it was a small, Nashville-based band and a self-titled album with a couch on the front of it. My peers in school were immersed in this disc non-stop. I still remember picking it up from a Christian bookstore and sitting in a blue van on my birthday. Mom asking if it was the right one. Me telling her it was the only one.
That album got played to death. (I’ve replaced is more than twice.)
Fast forward to 2008, my wife walks down the aisle to the final track from that album, What Will Your Anthem Be?, done up in a beautiful piano rendition by a best friend.
Move on to present day, my church grants me access to create music playlists and of course the couch album is featured more than a couple of times on the intro and outro set list.
Two decades later and there doesn’t seem to be an end in sight to my obsession with it. What about your playlist? What still provides goosebumps every time it’s cycled through and you’d never imagine hitting the ‘next’ button? Why is it so important to you?
Here are the lyrics to What Will Your Anthem Be?:
When the glitter fades, It fades so fast
What really lasts, what will the anthem be?
Did we sing of rock and roll?
Did we sing if sacred souls?
Has the heart and the harmony met pleasingly?
When the flicker fades, it fades so fast
Nothing is left. What will be legacies?
Cause guitars burn you see
Recollect no memories
Of the lights and the cheers and the human vanity
Should I give?
Should I sing some rust?
Pity me for my golden lust
This one’s for the lily
And this one’s for the rose
Here it is, let the truth be told
Here it is, we would like to know
Here it is, what will the anthem be
What will your anthem be?
What will our anthem be?
What will the anthem be?