Our world changed in 2020 as the Covid-19 pandemic spread around the world. It was this month of March, 2020 when things hit home – as sports leagues, theatres, stores, schools, restaurants, gyms – and just about everything else locked-down. And many of the lucky ones who kept their jobs, began working remotely – redefining the old term ‘the home office’. As time went on, and plans for trips, festivals or even family visits were put off – who would know for how long – not only the disappointment increased, so did the fear. People were getting sick, many were dying – the details of their deaths were gruesome – from locked-down nursing homes to overwhelmed and crowded hospitals. And all we could do was stay ‘physically distanced’, wear a mask, and wash-wash-wash our hands.
We walked through empty streets, shuffling ghost-like, past parks with cordoned off playgrounds. We lined-up, dutifully six feet apart, outside grocery stores with reduced capacities. Waiting and worrying, everywhere, every day. That’s how it was before the vaccines, and renewed hope. Often-times it was the company of radio and music that kept us going – Zoomer Radio’s comfortable blend of familiar music, and the companionship of the show hosts.
There was a certain kind of song that helped us in particular: calming, hopeful and reassuring songs are well-remembered for helping us get through the day. On this Sunday – the second anniversary of the widespread lock-down in Ontario, I’m looking back on those songs.
The show’s first hour is ‘This Week in Zoomer Music‘ – recalling Bob Dylan’s first album, released 60 years ago this week; Chuck Berry’s last album released 5 years ago, and ‘The Story Behind the Song‘ ‘Taxi’ – the first hit from Harry Chapin. That fascinating story-song was released 50 years ago, and I’ll not only play ‘Taxi‘ but also its rarely-heard sequel that continues and concludes the story of ‘Harry and Sue’. I hope you’ll tune in.