Still more lazy thoughts from this one…

The Soundtrack of My Life – The 00s


My local colleague Arlee Bird from Tossing It Out broached a meme a few years back that certainly intrigued:

The Soundtrack of My Life

As Arlee put it, “A few weeks ago a piece was posted by Jessica, the Modern Day Drifter, on her  Country Girl blog about The Soundtrack To Your Life.  She proposed the following”:

What would be the soundtrack to your life? What songs would be included that can sum up past events as well as things in the present?

Made an impression. So, I decided to follow suit with one of my own. Copying the idea, I know. But then again, I have no shame. 😉 So I will accept the Modern Day Drifter’s challenge from awhile back, care of Arlee and with thanks, and see where it takes me. The high points for sure, but many will be skipped. With one caveat. I’ll break it into decades. Time now to end with “the Aughts.” The newly mean, and hardly lean, 2000s.


Label: Peak Records ‎– PKD-8500-2
Format: CD, Album
Released: 2000
Genre: Smooth Jazz
Charted: album cut

Proved geostrategist Thomas P.M. Barnett‘s prophesy right in the year 2000:

“…you stayed cool enough across your 20s, and maybe you faked it deep into your 30s, but then you woke up in your 40s and realized you absolutely hate your kids’ music!”

Happens to everyone. Stayed as far away as I could from what was “Pop” at the start of the new millennium. Falling back to my jazz fusion ways, The Rippingtons’ Caribbean Breeze called to me, and I came running.


Label: CTI Records ‎– CTI 6063
Format: Vinyl, Album
Released: 1976
Genre: Jazz Fusion
Charted: Top 100 across genres

The world as we knew it didn’t fall apart because of Y2K. Life, child rearing carried on, just quicker a pace now with two kids. Less time than ever for the popular arts of movies, music, and books for both my wife and I. What else is new. Fell back on my old tunes and favorites. Bob James for one, having blazed jazz fusion’s popularity in ’76 on Pop, R&B, and of course, Jazz charts as a result of his finger-popping Westchester Lady.

song of joy - collection of chinese festival music

Label: Jingo Records – no record catalog  #
Format: Download, Album
Released: 2000
Genre: International
Charted: album cut

Speaking of fresh starts, must include the contemplative music by Xiao-Peng Jiang And The Chinese Orchestra Of Shanghai Conservatory and their collection of Chinese festival music that claimed me. Their Song of Joy beguiled this listener. Like to think my Eight Grade Music Appreciation teacher would have approved as it kept classic music (in whatever form) always close by.

gladiator soundtrack

Label: Decca – 289 467 094-2
Format: CD, Album
Released: 2000
Genre: Movie Soundtrack
Charted: album cut

Driving the point home at this stage of my listening habits, film soundtracks became more the force in mine. Radio airwaves had dropped in importance in the forty years since I began to take heed as a six-year-old, I’m sad to say. Also says something they’d lasted this long. Influential still. Hans Zimmer, with Lisa Gerrard’s mesmerizing vocals, by way of Gladiator (my friend Ruth agrees) brought that home with Now We Are Free.

Hannibal soundtrack

Label: Decca ‎– 9 48112-2
Format: CD, Album
Released: 2001
Genre: Soundtrack, Classical
Charted: album cut

Hans Zimmer popped up again less than a year later with his score for Ridley Scott’s underappreciated Hannibal. In fact, this particularly mournful piece, incorporating contending female and male voices, was used in a pair of films1 by the same director (with different film scorers) in equally quiet, moving scenes from two very different motion pictures four years apart. Patrick Cassidy’s extraordinary Vide Cor Meum.

ocean's eleven

Label: Warner Bros. Records ‎– 9 48112-2
Format: CD, Album
Released: 2001
Genre: Soundtrack, Classical
Charted: album cut

Everything old is new again. Returning to a work that grabbed me in junior high during the 60s by Claude Debussy. From one of his most famous piano suites, in fact. Clair de lune the third piece of the Suite bergamasque for that instrument. This reflective movement used in a pair of very different films by two equally dissimilar filmmakers at different stages of their careers this decade. Ocean’s Eleven being one2.


Label: Capitol Records ‎– no record catalog code
Format: CD, Single
Released: 2001
Genre: Pop, Electronic
Charted: #78 (US)

Hadn’t totally turned my back on Pop. It’s just that it rarely impacted as it once did with me, nor with those that were wildly successful with younger audiences. The French dance music group Télépopmusik and their modest hit here in the U.S., Breathe, a case in point. Even my young kids looked upon their dad fairly oddly whenever I brought this up on whatever speaker available. My wife had just learned to tolerate my quirks. 😉

let's stay together

Label: Hi Records ‎– 45-2202
Format: Vinyl, Single, 45 RPM
Released: 1971
Genre: Pop, Soul
Charted: #1 (US), #1 Soul

Collected father-figures all of my life, many times without realizing. My father-in-law, a Korean War vet, the last one. Emphasized I’d better be committed in marrying his daughter, the closest held of his children, the day we announced our engagement. Or else. Out in Burbank playing golf the morning when I got the news of his sudden passing. Day before my wife’s birthday. Can’t hear Al Green’s Let’s Stay Together without thinking of him fondly.

big yellow taxi

Label: Geffen ‎– INTR-10867-2
Format: CD, Single
Released: 2002
Genre: Pop
Charted: #42 (US)

Death reverberates in families in all sorts of way. Grieving, then adjusting to the void left. Her dad the primary caregiver to his spouse, would normally fall next to the oldest female child, by praxis. Here, not the eldest but the middle child — my spouse. Blurred with rapid reshape as we’d adjust. She taking care of moms, me at home with the kids. Remembered Counting Crows’ cover of Joni Mitchell’s Big Yellow Taxi then. Little else.

if you're not the one

Label: Island Records ‎– B0000267-32
Format: CD, Single
Released: 2003
Genre: Pop
Charted: #15 (US)

Young Daniel Bedingfield made me eat my words with If You’re Not The One. Damn him! I was set to stop this pop music thing as I approached 50. My daughter, oh so much more verbal that her older brother ever was at the same age — typical I’d learn now raising a female child — just had to laugh at her old man over this. “You’re so silly, daddy!” She the more fierce, too. With a temper to match. Wonder where she got that?

a thousand miles

Label: A&M ‎– 069497676-2
Format: CD, Single
Released: 2001 (caught 2003)
Genre: Pop
Charted: #15 (US)

That same daughter of ours already poring over music way more, and earlier, than her graying father ever did. Recognizing the more cranky of her parents had started listening to Vanessa Carlton’s ’01 hit, A Thousand Miles, a couple of years later. She even asked her mother about this, if I recall. Said something to the effect she should give her dad a little slack. “Being he’s five years older than your mom and all.” Oh boy.


Label: Arista Records ‎– 07822-15203-2
Format: CD, Single
Released: 2002 (caught 2003)
Genre: Rock
Charted: #5 (US)

By the next year, we’d settled into the new routine. My mother-in-law very much apart of day-to-day family life. Such stresses either pull that apart or make it stronger. The latter for us, primarily because of my wife. Our rock in whatever storm that blew our way. As usual, I was late to the party for new music. Santana’s The Game Of Love, featuring Michelle Branch, expressed my feelings to the most important woman in my life.

my immortal

Label: Windup Records ‎– WUJC 20082-2
Format: CD, Single
Released: 2003
Genre: Rock
Charted: #7 (US)

In the 60s and 70s, when moving about became too painful (and later not possible) for her, my brother and I were charged in my mother’s stead. Sent to family gatherings, her’s and dad’s, on her behalf. Some happy, but most funerals. Hated those. Saw far too much mourning at an early age, but it was important to her we did. She prepared her sons for what lay ahead. Evanescenece’s My Immortal3 expressed that in song like no other.

Collateral soundtrack

Label: Hip-O Records ‎– B0003259-02
Format: CD, Album
Released: 2004
Genre: Soundtrack
Charted: album cut

My long-time friend and work colleague suggested we getaway after a round of golf to see a movie together, one our wives had no interest whatsoever in watching. This implementation of a “…guys gone golf & movie-going” included cinema fare our spouses, in unison, customarily respond to when invited, “No, you go.” Collateral released this year, and Audioslave’s Shadow on the Sun got plenty of play once I returned.

kill bill vol. 2 soundtrack

Label: A Band Apart ‎– 9362-48676-1
Format: CD, Album
Released: 2004
Genre: Soundtrack
Charted: album cut

Much the same occurred for the song Goodnight Moon, which came to my scrutiny byway of a pair Quentin Tarantino films my golf partner and I could not miss. The 2000 track by Shivaree played during the end credits of 2004’s Kill Bill: Vol. 2 and in the director’s original vision of the film as one grand epic (which I happily caught when it played here in Los Angeles years later in 2011) – Kill Bill: The Whole Bloody Affair.


Label: Capitol Records ‎– B-5614
Format: Vinyl, Single, 45 RPM
Released: 1986
Genre: Rock
Charted: #2 (US)

Amazing how much parenthood consumes one. Few things expand in importance as this, I’d learn, by the mid-point of the new millennium’s initial decade. When those small beings become their own individuals, with similar and quite different opinions and tastes, best be prepared. Especially when “their music” breech their parent’s awareness. Never expected Crowded House’s Don’t Dream It’s Over would be my son’s. Wow.

cool - gwen stefani

Label: Interscope Records ‎– 988 435-6
Format: CD, Single
Released: 2005
Genre: Pop
Charted: Lucky #13 (US),

Every so often, I could surprise my children and my wife with the music choices made. A rare trifecta in this household. This year was Gwen Stefani’s Cool. Ended up as a ringtone, as well. I could still touch my toes without bending a knee, too. Just pass me the Advil when done. Later, I’d find her “Love.Angel.Music.Baby.” CD in our stacks. Suspect my wife bought it, whether before or after this has never been ascertained, though.

if it's lovin' that you want

Label: Def Jam Recordings ‎– DEFR 16446-1
Format: CD, Single
Released: 2005 (discovered in 2006)
Genre: Hip-Hop
Charted: #36 (US)

My brief Hip-Hop period was just that. Brief. The same year someone purchased “the one billionth song” from Apple iTunes, Google bought YouTube (which powers this music series), and the International Astronomical Union downgraded Pluto from “Planet” to a “dwarf planet”. Around the same time my bride started to give me jealous looks whenever I turned up Rihanna’s If It’s Lovin’ That You Want. Go figure.


Label: Interscope Records ‎–
Format: CD, Single
Released: 2006
Genre: Synth Pop
Charted: #3 (US)

If you ever drove behind my car, especially with my eleven-year-old and his seven-year-old sister in the rear seat, you’d likely remember. Usually the music turned up, some old guy obviously trying to act hip with his grandchildren. Embarrassing. Especially if Gwen Stefani’s Sweet Escape blasted through speakers (sorry, no subwoofer). The kids gyrating their heads in unison to the pop rhythms emanating, making a scene.

S-O-S Rihanna

Label: Def Jam Recordings ‎– DEFR 16474-1
Format: CD, Single
Released: 2006
Genre: Electronic, Hip Hop
Charted: #1 (US)

She-who-must-be-obeyed saved her most suspicious looks here. Principally after I fastened on to Rihanna’s megahit, S.O.S., sometime after it crested the charts. Better later than never, I thought… me the only one. Tried to explain it had nothing to do with the sexy beauty of the artist. “Reminds me of you, dear.” That went nowhere. Natch. Suffered through it, though. It’s my ringtone for said love of my life. Yes, my wife…sheesh.


Label: Arista ‎– 88697 17038 2
Format: CD, Single
Released: 2007
Genre: Rock
Charted: #26 (US)

Back to my roots I fled as our oldest turned twelve and youngest came up on a precocious eight…going on twenty. Could see we, no…me, would be in for trouble with her in a few years. Recalled my daughter, in pre-school, demanded full conversations while I drove home. Not to be ignored. “Dad, I’m talking to you.” And Santana’s music video, voiced by Chad Kroeger, Into the Night ignited a father’s full on worry. Ay Dios Mio.

I Hope You Dance

Label: Universal Records ‎– 0881721587
Format: CD, Single
Released: 2000
Genre: Pop, Country
Charted: #14 (US), #1 (Country)

“Life in all her wonder.” Six years after her husband passed, with enough heartache and ill-health, my mother-in-law joined him in ’08. Witnessed her daughter give full measure in caring for her over the entire period. In awe of my wife, hurting once more over another mother lost, couldn’t say it in any meaningful way to my bride. Hoped I was there for her in effort. Lee Ann Womack’s I Hope You Dance finally entered my consciousness.


Label: Capitol ‎– 509992 65784 2 2
Format: CD, Single
Released: 2008
Genre: Rock
Charted: #1 (US)

Having gone through enough of these, loss taints a year in memory. Hard to look beyond the mark it leaves. Tried to explain it to our children, now old enough to understand the sting. Never an easy thing. Our son particularly close to grandma had a hard time. Our daughter fell back to music to cope. She’d play Coldplay’s Viva La Vida enough to also fetch solace for her old man as the year ended. Strange how this all works.


Label: Interscope Records – INTR-12386-2
Format: CD, Single
Released: 2008
Genre: Pop, Electronic
Charted: #1 (US)

Looked to get my bride out of the house whenever we could. Took her anywhere possible. New York City good as any in returning to another new normal. Joined by our sister-in-law and her expanding family (beautiful new daughter) in The Big Apple. Virgin America’s Disco-lit ambiance and seat-side entertainment video and music system introduced Lady Gaga and Just Dance to me. Not the kids, or my spouse, though.

A Summer Place - Ricardo Zara

Label: Unknown – unknown
Format: Download, Single Track
Released: 2008 (found 2009)
Genre: Easy Listening, World
Charted: album cut

Found myself looking back once more as the end of the decade approached. Thinking back to the one song that began the whole journey, as well as this soundtrack. Theme to A Summer Place. Started to collect and download various versions on a musical lark. Amazed at the scope this movie theme song had attained throughout the world over the decades. Locked on to Italian guitarist Riccardo Zara’s A Summer Place.

katherine jenkins - sacred arias

Label: UCJ Music ‎– 476 697-1
Format: CD, Album
Released: 2008
Genre: Classical
Charted: album cut

When I began this series, I knew what would start my soundtrack, but not the song that’d finish it along with the decade (on a Friday the 13th, at that). The mezzo-soprano Katherine Jenkins cleared that up. Emblematic, really, for the task as her career crossed over her operatic talent to Pop. Found her 2008 Sacred Arias CD the final year of 00s. Brought my love of classical music back to the forefront in marrying the commercial that still captivates my listening. Her cover for Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah the clincher. Made popular by Jeff Buckley and many others, her singular voice paired with this enthralled me no end.


Many thanks to you all for joining me with this music memoir4.

Soundtrack of My Life series

  1. Kingdom of Heaven (2005) the other that utilized “Vide Cor Meum” to equally deep effect. 
  2. A great many films have used this piece over the years. Steven Soderbergh for Ocean’s Eleven and 2002’s Dog Soldiers by Neil Marshall cited here. 
  3. Wouldn’t be late with this as I latched on to the tune watching Daredevil (2003). 
  4. If I’m still around when the 2010s finish, and still blogging, I’ll be more than happy to add the decade to this series. 

29 Responses to “The Soundtrack of My Life – The 00s”

    • le0pard13

      That’s great, Cindy! Music certainly brings out the memories and the things we share in common. Thank you so much for following this series. Much appreciated, my friend. 🙂


  1. ruth

    Oh man, you’ve inspired me to do my own Soundtrack of my life post now, as we share quite a few favorite songs, especially Gladiator! I also LOVE My Immortals, Viva La Vida, Just Dance. In fact, I’m listening to them now 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • le0pard13

      Oh, I’m happy to hear it! Look forward to your soundtrack. Gotta hear what you have to offer. Glad to hear we’re pretty in sync for this period of time. Many thanks, Ruth! 😀


  2. Arlee Bird

    Another fine eclectic mix. I kept up with a lot of pop in the aught’s, but I returned to much of my 60’s and 70’s roots as well, buying a lot of greatest hits collections. Most of my listening now is classical, but I’m not a musical recluse my any means.

    Some good stuff here.

    Arlee Bird
    A to Z Challenge Co-host
    Tossing It Out

    Liked by 1 person

    • le0pard13

      Thank you very much, Lee. We’re much alike in that you and I returned to those formative years acquiring greatest hits compilations. Just picked up another, this time on vinyl, for the 70s last Wednesday. It’s a disease I tell you. 😉

      Lot a fun was had doing this. Thanks for the inspiration, my friend.


  3. Victor De Leon

    Incredible post! So deep. A very insightful and meaningful read. Some of those tunes just rule. They take me back. Great job! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person


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