91 Songs About Memories

Updated on March 9, 2018
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FlourishAnyway believes there is a playlist for just about any situation and is on a mission to unite and entertain the world through song.

Remember the way it used to be? Bring back memories about the good times spent with friends, family, and old flames. Make a playlist of pop, rock, and country songs about memories and reminiscing.
Remember the way it used to be? Bring back memories about the good times spent with friends, family, and old flames. Make a playlist of pop, rock, and country songs about memories and reminiscing. | Source

Making Memories

My dad traveled six hours to take my nieces and nephews trick-or-treating for Halloween, because their family of seven doesn't "do" Halloween. Asked why he would travel so far for a night of costumes and handout candy, he happily remarked that they "were making memories."

Making memories is what we all do each and every day. Who you spend time with, as well as how you spend those moments, will be what tomorrow's memories are made of. Spend that time well. One day you may need your memories to carry you through.

While you're in a nostalgic mood, make a playlist of pop, rock, and country songs to celebrate remembering and the memories you hold dear. And then go make some new memories with people you care about.

1. "Good Old Days" by Macklemore (featuring Kesha)

You often don't know you're living through the good old days until they've passed you by. That's the sentiment expressed in this 2017 pop song which recognizes the value of appreciating the moment.

Don't fritter away your youth worrying about tomorrow, dreaming relentlessly about finding success. The future will be here soon enough, and all you'll have is memories. Make sure they are good ones.

I wish somebody would have told me babe
Some day these will be the good old days
All the love you won't forget
And all these reckless nights you won't regret
Someday soon your whole life's gonna change
You'll miss the magic of these good old days.

2. "When We Were Young" by Adele

In this emotionally wrought pop song from 2016, the narrator unexpectedly runs into an old lover at an evening event. Although it's been years, the memories come flooding back to her. Being in his presence again is like coming home, and she seeks a moment together with him to reflect on what they once shared when they were both young and in love.

3. "19 Somethin'" by Mark Wills

Gen Xers will recognize all the significant cultural highlights of their youth in this fun 2002 country song. The tune rattles off a list of trends and events from both the 1970s and 1980s:

  • Stretch Armstrong
  • Pac Man
  • the Farrah Fawcett hairdo
  • Daisy Duke and her cutoff jeans
  • the Rubik's cube
  • the Columbia Space Shuttle disaster and
  • big hair and parachute pants

If you lived through these good times, then take a trip down memory lane. If you weren't born yet, listen to everything you missed out on.

Reader Poll

What's the biggest trigger of old memories for you?

See results

4. "Automatic" by Miranda Lambert

Technological conveniences help us navigate life on automatic, and it's easy to forget how we did it when everything was old school. This country song from 2014 reminds us of the simpler days before cellphones and texting, automatic dryers, navigation systems, email, and everything else that's instant. Back then, we put in the time, learned the manual way of doing things, and waited our turn.

5. "Glory Days" by Bruce Springsteen

This 1984 rock classic drives the point home that one day, we'll all look back on the past as the good old days and wonder just where time went. The song describes a man in his thirties who recounts his high school days when he runs into an old friend.

... I hope when I get old I don't sit around thinking about it
But I probably will
Yeah, just sitting back trying to recapture
A little of the glory of, well time slips away
And leaves you with nothing, mister but
Boring stories of glory days.

6. "Sixteen" by Thomas Rhett

Oh, to be 16 again! The guy in this 2017 country tune recalls being a wild, free, and confident teenager. At the time, he was learning to drive, sneaking in after curfew, and always looking forward to getting older. Now, as he looks back, he wishes he could go back and recapture some of that feeling again. There are no "redos."

7. "I Go Back" by Kenny Chesney

Music is like a date stamp, a time machine that can transport you to another era. The guy in this 2004 country song hears "Jack and Diane" and suddenly he's carried back to his high school days. The world made more sense then, and he felt invincible. And when he hears "Keep On Rockin' Me Baby" he thinks of the frat parties of his college days with the gnawing feeling that time was slipping away.

What songs serve as your time machine?

8. "Thnks fr th Mmrs" by Fall Out Boy

The couple in this 2007 rock song are out of love but still going through the motions of a relationship. Their affair has become one of convenience, and the narrator acknowledges that it wasn't fulfilling now that he looks back: "Thanks for the memories even though they weren't so great."

And in case you're wondering about the title with no vowels? Well, that was the band's response to their record label's request that they shorten the song title. They "disemvoweled" it.

"Take care of your memories.  For you cannot relive them." - Bob Dylan, American musician
"Take care of your memories. For you cannot relive them." - Bob Dylan, American musician | Source

9. "Summer of '69" by Bryan Adams

The man in this 1985 classic rock song recounts the best days of his life from the summer of '69. He remembers how alive he felt playing with his high school garage band and being in love for the first time. Feeling young and restless, he was high on life and felt that the magic would last forever.

10. "Graduation Song: Hold Onto the Memories" by Corey Tynan

Tell me this hasn't happened to you. When you walk across the stage at graduation time (or watch a loved one do so), there's a lump that grows in your throat. You realize that this is a sea change and you will never see most of these people again. For those you do see, life will never be the same.

This sentimental 2010 song captures the strange juxtaposition of emotions that is graduation: eagerness to embrace the future that awaits and tentativeness about leaving behind everything that is familiar.

The lights go dim as we suddenly see
It's time to find who we're meant to be
We couldn't wait for this to end
Now we wish we could start again.

If you have a graduate in the family, then acknowledge the occasion with a playlist of songs that celebrate graduation as they look both forward and back.

11. "I Will Remember You" by Sarah McLachlan

This Grammy Award-winning pop ballad from 1999 captures the solemn, mournful feeling of saying goodbye. The narrator stands on the edge of a major transition in her life and has so much to say in parting. However, she cannot find the words to express herself except to ask whether her friend will remember her.

12. "Kids" by OneRepublic

When you're in the moment, it's so easy to believe that life will always be this way. The narrator in this 2016 pop song recalls the wild days of his youth when he and his friends had time on their sides and few adult responsibilities.

As fun as those memories were, however, he looks forward to making more memories in the future:

I refuse to look back thinking days were better
Just because they're younger days
I don't know what's 'round the corner
Way I feel right now I swear we’ll never change,

"What I remember most about high school are the memories I created with my friends." - J.J. Watt, American football player
"What I remember most about high school are the memories I created with my friends." - J.J. Watt, American football player | Source

13. "Amnesia" by 5 Seconds of Summer

If you've ever experienced a break-up in which the relationship is over but the heart refuses to move on, then you know that memories can haunt you. In this 2014 pop song, a broken-hearted guy wishes he had amnesia so that he could escape the memories that keep him stuck in the past. His ex has found a new love, yet he wonders how can she be fine when he feels like such a mess?

If you're still stuck in that sad, lonely place, here are additional songs about struggling to get over an ex.

14. "Springsteen" by Eric Church

Memories take the narrator in this 2011 country song back to being carefree, 17, and in love. The way he recalls it, the attraction was instant. It was love at first sight, and they spent the summer together—two teens, a Jeep, and a Bruce Spring soundtrack blaring in the background. Even now, years afterwards, Springsteen songs take him back to that time, and he wonders whether it's true for her as well.

15. "Unbelievable" by Owl City (featuring Hanson)

Anyone who grew up in the 1990s can find plenty of nostalgia to relate to in this 2015 pop song as the narrator recalls memories of childhood. From putting Mentos in Diet Coke to watching VHS tapes and playing Nintendo games, growing up during that era was so enjoyable that he thought it couldn't get any better. However, his current self comments that as unbelievable as the past was, the future holds promise of even better memories.

16. "Unforgettable" by Thomas Rhett

When you fall in love with someone, you can often recall every detail of first meeting them. For the guy in this 2017 country ditty, he rattles off every unforgettable portion of the memory, from what day it was to the song that was playing and what she was wearing. He even told her that he was going to marry her. Apparently, his bold prediction came true.

17. "If Drinking Don't Kill Me Her Memory Will" by George Jones

The incomparable George Jones was known for his drinking and his songs of relationship regret. In this 1980 country classic he belts out longing for an ex whose memory still haunts him. George spent memorable years in the '70s in a rocky marriage to country star Tammy Wynette. Theirs was a romance that ended in divorce and a string of country hits.

18. "(You Want to) Make a Memory" by Bon Jovi

Two old lovers reconnect and share some memories in this 2007 rock song. And as they look at an old photograph, they play with the possibility of creating a new memory.

19. "Photograph" by Ed Sheeran

This 2014 pop ballad was inspired by the singer's long distance love relationship with singer Nina Nesbitt. He helped keep their relationship alive with the help of memories and feelings evoked by photos:

Hmm, we keep this love in this photograph
We made these memories for ourselves
Where our eyes are never closing
Hearts were never broken
And time's forever frozen still.

In the end, photos weren't enough to sustain the love affair which Nesbitt described it as a "love/hate" relationship.

20. "Memories" by Shawn Mendes

The heartbroken guy in this 2015 pop song initially invested so much hope in the relationship he had with his girlfriend. He hoped that it would last forever, but now all that remains are the photographs and the memories:

All these precious moments
That we carved in stone
Are only memories after all.

"You can close your eyes to reality but not to the memories." - Stanislaw Jerzy Lec, Polish poet
"You can close your eyes to reality but not to the memories." - Stanislaw Jerzy Lec, Polish poet | Source

Even More Songs About Memories and Remembering

Year Released
21. Reminiscing
Little River Band
22. In My Life
The Beatles
23. Between an Old Memory and Me
Travis Tritt
24. Reflections
The Supremes
25. Choke
26. Memories Can Wait
Talking Heads
27. The Boys of Summer
Don Henley
28. Brown-Eyed Girl
Van Morrison
29. Memories
Elvis Presley
30. Middle of a Memory
Cole Swindell
31. Crocodile Rock
Elton John
32. Wasted Time
Keith Urban
33. American Honey
Lady Antebellum
34. Night Moves
Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band
35. Marina del Rey
George Strait
36. All Summer Long
Kid Rock
37. September Morn
Neil Diamond
38. www.memory
Alan Jackson
39. '65 Love Affair
Paul Davis
40. Live Until I Die
Clay Walker
41. Twenty Years and Two Husbands Ago
Lee Ann Womack
42. The Way We Were
Barbara Streisand
43. May We All
Florida Georgia Line
44. Blood Brothers
Luke Bryan
45. The First Word in Memory Is Me
Janie Fricke
46. Burnin' Old Memories
Kathy Matthea
47. I Wanna Go Back
Eddie Money
48. Memories
The Temptations
49. Dancing Your Memory Away
Charly McClain
50. Time Marches On
Tracy Lawrence
51. When You Close Your Eyes
Night Ranger
52. Photographs and Memories
Jim Croce
53. Senior Year
Randy Houser
54. Jack and Diane
John Cougar Mellencamp
55. Take Your Memory With You
Vince Gill
56. I Wanna Go Back
Eddie Money
57. Memory
The Lacs
58. As Good as I Once Was
Toby Keith
59. I Knew the Bride (When She Used to Rock 'n' Roll)
Nick Lowe
60. Grandpa (Tell Me 'bout the Good Old Days)
The Judds
61. Memories
David Guetta (featuring Kid Cudi)
62. Back When
Tim McGraw
63. My Favorite Memory
Merle Haggard
64. Through the Years
Kenny Rogers
65. Every Mile a Memory
Dierks Bentley
66. Memories of Us
Keith Urban
67. The House That Built Me
Miranda Lambert
68. House of Memories
Panic! at the Disco
69. Against the Wind
Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band
70. Fool Hearted Memories
George Strait
71. For a Little While
Tim McGraw
72. New Year's Day
Taylor Swift
73. Paper Hearts
Tori Kelly
74. Photograph
75. Kiss Me, Kiss Me
5 Seconds of Summer
76. Don't Stay
Linkin Park
77. Wildest Dreams
Taylor Swift
78. Coldest Winter
79. 7 Years Old
Lukas Graham
80. The Dance
Garth Brooks
81. The Good Stuff
Kenny Chesney
82. Don't Blink
Kenny Chesney
83. Dance with My Father
Luther Vandross
84. Yesterday
The Beatles
85. Remember When
Alan Jackson
86. Remember Everything
Five Finger Death Punch
87. Whenever You Remember
Carrie Underwood
88. I Remember You
Trisha Yearwood
89. Rascal Flatts
Rascal Flatts
90. Good Riddance
Green Day
91. A Different World
Bucky Covington
Know a song about memories that should be on this playlist? Make a suggestion in the Comments Section below!
"Nothing is ever really lost to us as long as we remember it." - L.M. Montgomery, Canadian author
"Nothing is ever really lost to us as long as we remember it." - L.M. Montgomery, Canadian author | Source

© 2018 FlourishAnyway


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    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 3 days ago from USA

      Dianna - Old photos really take me back too. Sometimes it's hard to believe how much time has passed. Thank you for reading. Have a wonderful week.

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      Dianna Mendez 4 days ago

      Another good article! Songs do bring back memories for me but I think looking at old photos bring a reality to how much time has passed. I am going to have to look up Neil Diamond's song.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 9 days ago from USA

      Nikki, You are so kind and encouraging. Thanks for your support.

    • nikkikhan10 profile image

      Nikki Khan 9 days ago from London

      What an amazing list of songs Flourish,,past memories are very pleasant to remember and especially some songs bring us those moments back.

      Loved all the songs, thanks for sharing dear.

      And sorry I didn’t realise that you published a hub, found out when was checking my followers list.

      God bless you dear.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 13 days ago from USA

      Jo, Well said! Have a great weekend making new memories.

    • jo miller profile image

      Jo Miller 13 days ago from Tennessee

      Remembering the good times is always good, but it's never too late to make new memories.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA

      Nell - Thanks for stopping by to listen and read. Hope you're doing well.

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 2 weeks ago from England

      What a great list! I love adele, but didn't seem to know many of the others, but enjoyed listening to them, great hub as always.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA

      Frank - I loved them too, and yes, it's been awhile! Glad it brought back the memories for you, buddy. Have a great day.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA

      Larry - Thanks for the suggestion. I've added it as #90. I hope you're doing well.

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      Frank Atanacio 2 weeks ago

      The Little River Band, wow I use to love that group, that's was so good about your hubs.. they trigger long past memories.. Now I googled the little river band and I am playing their music as I comment.. thank you

    • Larry Rankin profile image

      Larry Rankin 2 weeks ago from Oklahoma

      Such a fertile topic, impossible to get them all. "Brown Eyed Girl" is a very special one for me, but there's so many good songs here.

      I didn't see "Good Riddance" by Green Day. To me it encompasses the given topic, but it's interpretable.

      Love your lists.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA

      Chitrangada - Thanks for the kind sentiments. Have a wonderful week!

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA

      Kallini2010 - I love your spirit, and the fact that you spend your birthday making new memories is inspirational. I hope those new experiences were good ones. I bet you're one heck of a buddy with your different take on life. And yes, smells definitely are triggers. I "smell" the people that I know. It may be the cat in me, however.

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 2 weeks ago from New Delhi, India

      What an amazing list of songs! Some lyrics get imprinted in our heart and mind. Thanks for sharing this well presented article!

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA

      Heidi - The power of repetition. My husband and I have completely different musical tastes, so I'm thankful for earbuds (as is he). Have a terrific week!

    • kallini2010 profile image

      kallini2010 2 weeks ago from Toronto, Canada

      Oh, the good old days! Fact is, they may not have been all that good. What makes them so good is that they are old. (And God forbid, you discover your old diaries or letters or anything written at that time. You'll realize that what you remember is not what it was).

      I agree with your father's idea and commitment to make memories. My "policy" about birthdays is that we (I) should spend them doing something new (for the first time) no matter how trivial it could be - it's the only way to remember what we did and where we went on that particular year.

      On my last year birthday (conveniently falling on Halloween - when costumes, decorations and festive mood, in short, the entertainment bit is all taken care of), I went to so called Distillery District in Toronto. I went alone, made photos and had "experiences". My family is not necessarily share my ideas, but I try my best. At least with my son we had birthday my way and his way and guess which ones we remember?

      To add to memory triggers - smells. Smells are the most powerful memory provocateurs.

    • heidithorne profile image

      Heidi Thorne 2 weeks ago from Chicago Area

      So many good ones in this list! "The Way We Were" was the first one I thought of from your list. But hubby has listened to "Summer of '69" so much it's permanently stuck as a memory in my head. :) Happy Monday!

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA

      Mary - How true! There's every crisp detail of some memories but the things you need right now -- nothing. You're not alone!

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA

      Dora - I appreciate your stopping by and your kind comment. Have a wonderful week!

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      Dora Weithers 2 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Memories are what life is made of; they are to be cherished. I like the Bob Dylan quote. Thanks for all the lyrics you share.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA

      Bob - I do the same thing. While many technological changes have enhanced our lives, there's also the concern that we're losing some of the basic skills of interpersonal relationships and communications. It's easy to come off sounding like someone who "walked to school uphill both ways" but through time people who are younger will grow to understand. Thanks for taking the time to share your personal thoughts.

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      Mary Wickison 2 weeks ago from Brazil

      It is amazing how hearing some songs will bring memories rushing back. Both good and bad.

      I also think its incredible that I can remember the words to a song I haven't heard for 30 years but can't find my car keys that I had two hours ago. LOL

      As always, great list.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA

      Tamara - My daughter, an only child, is about to graduate from high school so I'm a little emotionally sloppy with the memories these days, too. We're waiting for college decisions which should come soon. She could end up out-of-state or just a few hours away, not sure. Hope you are doing well. Hugs back to you!

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA

      Genna - I love Bruce Springsteen, too! If only kids knew about the "wild child" that resides in some of their aunts and uncles, mothers and fathers and others.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA

      Shyron - Thank you for the little poem/comment. I hope you have a fabulous week ahead.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA

      Linda - Thanks for reading and commenting. I'm sure they'll remember the gesture for a long time. Have a wonderful week!

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      Robert E Smith 2 weeks ago from Rochester, New York

      Great article. It is amazing to me what stirs up memories. The biggest trigger for me is the constant need of media and purveyors of new things to make it seem like the "cutting edge" devices and methodology are truly the best ever conceived. Each time someone shows something that will "revolutionize" how things had been done for hundreds (if not thousands of years) I cringe.

      Tradition verus progress, such a creatively destructive process!

      My opinion is that there is a trade-off of sorts levied for every step of progress. For every new-fangled gizmo made, a facet of history is destroyed. The clearest example I can give of this is cell phones. We get to use instant digital communication with almost anyone in the whole world and at the same time, we lose the ability to speak person-to-person with anyone in the whole world. We get a brand new shorthand of symbols, a timesaving way to print ideas via airwaves and at the same time we lose how proper language and motivational speaking is done.

      All things were not done inefficiently in ages past. All new things are not preferable to original methods of doing things.

      I find myself saying the same things I've heard my parents and grandparents say, "When I was a kid..." "I remember when..." The shame of it all is when the old way is put forth to anyone who is unfamiliar with it, it is almost impossible to make that younger gal or fellow understand what is trying to convey. It almost never is possible for them to see the trade-off, the incredible loss in certain instances of progress. The whole comparison thing comes off as an old man stubbornly sticking to an outdated and rapidly vanishing world in which he is deparate to hold again before he dies. Bob.

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      Tamara Yancosky Moore 2 weeks ago from Uninhabited Regions

      These are the songs that usually make me cry. Seasons in the Sun is a particularly intense tear-jerker for me. I get very emotional when it comes to memories.

      You are still on your game, and doing a wonderful job on your songs, as always!



    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 2 weeks ago from Massachusetts, USA

      Songs always trigger memories for me...the first time heard it; where I was, and what I was doing. Bruce's Glory Days took me back so many years...the freedom and the strides to his music, and my single, wild-gal years. I loved this hub. :-)

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 2 weeks ago from Texas

      Each song brings back a memory

      Of treasures lost

      Of loves that can no longer be

      And I hope you have not forgotten me

      But I don't mind if your songs brings those memories



      Blessings my friend

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      Linda Crampton 2 weeks ago from British Columbia, Canada

      I love the story of your father driving a long distance to help children celebrate Halloween. What a kind act. I love the Bob Dylan quote, too. Good memories are so important in life.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA

      Devika - So glad you enjoy these songs so much. Have a wonderful weekend.

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      Devika Primić 2 weeks ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Wow!! These are beautiful songs and just remembering so many on the list took me down my lane as well.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA

      Mary - I sure wished I had that situation, as I moved around a lot growing up. You're very lucky. Have a wonderful weekend.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA

      Clive - Lots of work goes into each of my playlists. Thanks for noticing.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA

      Bill - My dad knows the importance of memories and nostalgia. He is one of eight children and has lost two siblings in the last six months. One day, all we'll have is our memories ... unless they disappear too. Thanks for stopping by, and have a terrific weekend. Hope it's getting to be springtime on the west coast.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA

      Linda - It's a shame that some of the brightest flowers bloom so quickly and are picked early. Jim Croce was one of them. Hope you have a wonderful weekend.

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      Bill Holland 2 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      I was all over #23 an #42; oddly I didn't think of the Beatles. So many great songs about this topic. And I love the story of your dad driving six hours...what a guy!

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      Mary Norton 2 weeks ago from Ontario, Canada

      I love the poetry in some of these songs. Nowadays, with Facebook, one can hardly escape memories of the past. I enjoy reminiscing some of these with my childhood friends. Maybe, in one of our reunions, we should play these songs.

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      Clive Williams 3 weeks ago from Jamaica

      I have no idea how you know all these songs. But its cool

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      Linda Lum 3 weeks ago from Washington State, USA

      Flourish, I am amazed at how many of these I know (my memory is terrible, and since this article is about memories, I'm sure there's a joe hidden in here somewhere). I think my favorite is the one by Jim Croce. What wonderful lyrics he wrote; what a shame that we lost him so early in his career.

      Thanks for a wonderful article. I know you'll get lots of great comments on this one.