By My Side - The Interrupters

from the album Say It Out Loud (2016)

Once upon a time, I was driving from Oregon to Wisconsin in a Chevy Suburban with a buddy hitting small town bars and enjoying the ramblin' life.  Somewhere in Eastern Oregon this groovy girl named Sarah joined the ride.  She was exciting and fun.

After a misadventure in Idaho, we rolled into Montana for a Saturday night in Missoula.  It was a drunken blur of Crown Royal and Moose Drool.  As the night wore on, things started spinning and I crashed in the back of the Suburban.

The next morning my buddy told me that she caught an early flight back to Portland.

Over the years, I have grown fond of recalling stories from that trip.  I often wonder what ever became of Sarah.  I think of her long legs and suede hat.  I'm sure her spirit is lighting up a room somewhere.

Fast forward to a few days ago.  I am listening to By My Side, an advance single from Los Angeles ska band The Interrupters forthcoming album and the lyrics catch me off guard.  Queen Street, Whitaker Park, and Big Sky country.  They are singing about Missoula !!!

So the lyrics are about a girl (I suppose) who sticks with the songwriter from the old days in Missoula to their present life, making music in LA.  It is good, hard-driving ska with a catchy chorus:

I don't want to die
I don't want to die
I don't want to die
But if I do die, do die
I know you'll be by my side

I find something sweet, beautiful, and unexpected in this.

Cheers to those rambling' days, Sarah, and all those magical people who blow in and out our lives offering color and meaning.

Click Here to listen to By My Side.