There are those songs that you want to play on loop for hours on end, over and over and over again for no real reason other than that it feels right. Somehow you build an emotional connection to those notes and words and they weave themselves into your memories, allowing you to relive times that were pushed to the back of your mind. The good times or the bad times re-emerge, stronger and more clear than ever, as the song charms them out of you like a snake out of a basket.
For me, there’s one song that exhibits this more than any other, “Marvins Room” by Drake. One of the most beautiful 5 minutes and 48 seconds recorded, “Marvins Room” features a rather muted beat, with Drake rapping in low tones, rarely leaving the same few notes with the exception of the hook, in which he beautifully warbles the melancholy lyrics. the whole premise of the song is that Drake drunk calls his ex-girlfriend and decries her current boyfriend, saying that he (Drake) is better than him. When the song came out, it was instantly famous for the combination of masterful production, a beautiful hook and relatable lyrics. As a result, there was a slew of covers of the song, attempting to mimic its initial beauty, yet nothing came close. The original, with and without the context of the album (one of the greatest recent hip-hop albums Take Care) seems to be incomparable.
But how does this song relate to me? Very tangentially, if it all. First of all, I’ve touched alcohol, let alone gotten drunk at the club and called up my ex-girlfriend and put down her current boyfriend. I don’t even think I’ve called anyone in the past year. Yet, somehow a 25 year old’s Drake has his life seem so relevant to mine. The actual situation is irrelevant, as the entire feeling of the song encapsulates a certain time period in my life perfectly. The combination of melancholy, confusion, anger and loneliness is so uniquely captured that no one can do it justice with a cover. This song holds a rare power to exemplify a certain combination of emotions effortlessly and perfectly, which is why it became so popular.
I have to wonder what other songs are so strong that they can take hold of me or others like this.
(Note: I listened to “Marvins Room” around 14 times in the process of writing this post)