Winter Songs: Listener Picks | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

Winter Songs: Listener Picks

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Last week, we kicked off a series for the winter — and we asked you to be a part of it. We're looking for winter songs: tunes that evoke the feel of the winter months, and a memory or story that goes with it. (Please note: We were looking for winter songs, not holiday songs.) Well, we asked, you replied, and our inbox is jammed.

Amanda Thomas of New Orleans chose a song called "The Littlest Birds" by The Be Good Tanyas. She writes:

"I first heard it while I was living in western Massachusetts during my junior year of college. It was the year I experienced my first New England winter. Coming from Louisiana, one could even argue this was the year I experienced my first true winter."

She continues: "This song is light and bouncy, and will forever remind me of the first snow day we had that school year. Everyone was filled with joy and kindness, smiling as we flung snowballs at each other in the quad and giggling uncontrollably as we sledded down the hill with plastic lunch trays."

According to Dannie Prather of Louisville, Ky., "If ever there was a piece of music to inspire warm and cold winter memories, it is Chuck Mangione's 'Bellavia.' " Here's her story:

"During the interminable winters of 1976 through 1978, WHAS TV in Louisville would play 'Bellavia' over the never-ending list of school districts closed because of temperatures low enough to freeze the Ohio River ... and snowfall amounts high enough to make even the White Witch of Narnia long for a vacation at Miami Beach. 'Bellavia' became the anthem for sleeping in, sledding, skating on our frozen pond and watching lousy daytime TV."

Finally, this last letter may make some mothers cry. Daniel Cornine wrote us from Virginia Beach about his winter song, which takes him back 32 years. He writes:

"I was 16 and in high school. I joined my school's first-ever swim team, which required practice sessions at 5:30 on painfully cold New Jersey winter mornings. I had a 'thing' for Led Zeppelin at the time, and my song of choice was 'That's the Way.' My mother drove me to those early-morning swim practices, and on the drive to the pool, I always listened to this song. My mom never once complained about the cold, the early hour, the disruption to her morning routine or the fact that I'd rather listen to that song than engage her in conversation during those drives. It wasn't until much later in life ... upon hearing this song, that I came to fully appreciate how unselfish and dedicated a mother she was for so generously bearing this burden for me. This song, my winter song, will always remind me of her and her unconditional love for me and my five siblings."

If you have a song that means "winter" to you and a story to share, click on "Contact Us" at the bottom of this page and put "Winter Songs" in the subject line. We'll hear more of your stories and songs throughout the winter.

Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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