"Craaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaazzzzzzyyyy on you". The moment when Ann Wilson belts that line at 3:20 in the song of the same name is utterly primal. Raw emotion captured on record that cannot be replicated in an era of Ke$ha. Quite simply, music at its mofo best. It's no wonder that a teenage me picked up a guitar completely enthralled and wanting to mimic these - and other similarly strong - women.
At fourteen, I formed a "band" with two other misfits. We called ourselves "Lithium" after a Nirvana song - this was the grungy mid-90s after all when Kurt Cobain was positioned as a generational martyr. Or at least that's what the necrophilia-obsessed media told us. In retrospect, they kinda sucked. Our band played on though, performing impromptu concerts in basements for an audience of younger siblings who wouldn't judge. We never could master more than three chords at any given time but that wasn't the point; swagger-jacking by proxy was the ultimate end goal. In those dark, dingy basements, we were rock stars...if only for an hour or two. Then it was back to the existential crisis of not having a boyfriend and wondering if we would ever use calculus in real life (I'm pleased to say that the answer to this is no).
Music during my twenties was more a soundtrack, rather than an ambition and my tastes evolved to favour tunage created in the decades prior to my birth. There's something to be said of the 70s, when the world-at-large seemed a little more magical, a little less manufactured. It's sad that the likes of Ann and Nancy Wilson could not (and don't) exist today. Even their undeniable, proven talent is overshadowed by modern society's superficial expectations. I shudder to think what type of image Hollywood will normalize us to in twenty years. Ick. Living vicariously through their catalogue of hits, some of my fondest memories during this time of exploration and growth involve aimlessly driving through the streets of Winnipeg with my friend Rob while cranking Barracuda full blast. Then there were/are the feelings of loneliness and regret that make a track like Alone so relatable. Their songs speak to me and, in a way, speak for me.
In my compendium of all-time favorite musical artists, Heart would be tied with Led Zeppelin at third, trailing only The Beatles and Fleetwood Mac. I can't wait to see them this February. I can't wait to hear this live: