Anyone who knows me knows I adore Rick Springfield. And by adore I mean love. And by love I mean obsessively devoted to. It began when I was about six and my Aunt Linda let me watch one of his performances on TV. After that I was hooked. I wore out my Working Class Dog cassette tape. As I’ve previously mentioned, I grew up watching General Hospital, and of course, the days of Dr. Noah Drake are among my favorites.
Then I grew up and his star began to fade. For a long time, I lost track of him. I never lost my love, but it had become that nostalgic fondness one feels for a childhood friend. Then he re-emerged several years back to reappear on General Hospital for a story arc, and my interest was sparked once more. After reading his memoir, Late Late at Night, I was even more fascinated by him because of his raw honesty about his depression and obsessive tendencies. As someone who has suffered paralyzing depression, I can appreciate the trials he went through. Though his behavior leaves much to be desired, and not particularly something I find admirable nor “cool”, his story did spark my fan-fire for his music.
His latest album is Songs for the End of the World—and it ROCKS! I mean, it literally rocks. The first song, Wide Awake, begins with a booming drumbeat accompanied by an electric guitar frenzy. It’s one of those songs that gets your blood pumping, and is perfect for a long drive home late at night. Almost no chance of falling asleep at the wheel if you have this one cranked! It continues with a mix of rock-based songs with the upbeat pop and lovelorn ballads Rick has become known for thrown in. My kids, whom (to my husband’s chagrin) are HUGE Rick fans, love this album. My 3-year-old requests to listen to it almost every time we’re in the car (she alternates requests between this CD and the Phineas and Ferb soundtrack). Like me, her favorite Rick songs are the older ones (Jessie’s Girl, Kristina), but “I Hate Myself” and “Our Ship’s Sinkin’” have climbed the list. Other favorites of ours include:
- You and Me (a soulful ballad)
- Joshua (written for his son, this is a beautiful exhortation to seize the moment and live the big life you’re meant to live)
- Love Screws Me Up (an explicit lyric in the second verse, but one of those fun songs you can’t help but sing along with.)
This past January, I took my 10-year-old to see Rick perform in Hershey. It was her first rock concert and my first Rick concert. Let me just say, he puts on a FABULOUS show. It was a mix of the old favorites and an introduction to the new album. Next time, I will spring for the floor seats since he leaves the stage and roams around the floor among the fans! For a man who’ll be turning 64 (yes, 64!) in a few months, he has more energy and electricity than many 30-year-old’s I know. (And a rockin’ body—yowza!)
Check out some of his new stuff on iTunes or Amazon and see what you think. You may be delightfully surprised at his transformation from teeny-bopper idol to solid rocker.