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Music Rewind: Coldplay's "Shiver"

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In 2000, around the time that I was a sophomore in high school, I became a huge Coldplay fan. After falling in love with their single "Yellow", I bought their album Parachutes and must have listened to it hundreds of times. The album itself is only 10 tracks, and just a little over 40 minutes long.

I remember watching the video for "Yellow" and loving how marvelously dorky Chris Martin was, walking towards and singing at the camera in a dark windbreaker on the beach. Who knew this guy would end up marrying Gwyneth Paltrow one day?

Their music has evolved and changed over the years, and I've remained a faithful fan of theirs this last decade. Yet I don't know if it's because I was at a pivotal time in my life when I first discovered their music or what, but I get a sense of nostalgia when I go back and listen to the songs from Parachutes.

The songs from X&Y and Mylo Xyloto swell and build and are layered with what just might be a take off on Cat Stevens or Joe Satriani. They get stadiums to stomp and clap and sing along. But it's not until I go back to the songs from Parachutes that I'm transported to how I felt when I first listened to them, their quiet sweetness comforting me in times when I was a 'tortured', dramatic teenage girl.

Some of the songs have a simple guitar strum or haunting piano. Nothing else is needed.

Now that Coldplay has released their latest album, Mylo Xyloto, the Sirius/XM station The Spectrum has turned over their airwaves to the band, playing live performances and a range of their songs from over the years.

This afternoon with the sun beating into the windows of my car, I switched over to the station and caught the very beginning of one of my favorite songs from Parachutes, "Shiver". I can't say the last time I listened to it, but hearing it again and singing along to every word gave me that uplifting, happy feeling that any song you once loved and all of sudden hear again on the radio gives to you.

Now I've spent part of the afternoon going back and listening to the rest of the songs on that album. They remind me of nights spent doing homework on my bed, or driving with friends on snowy nights in the dead of winter.

In the land of iTunes and downloading singles, it feels like no one really listens to full albums as much anymore. I'm just as guilty. But in thinking about albums that have left a mark on my life, I'd say that Parachutes is definitely one of them.

Along with Joni Mitchell's Blue, John Mayer's Room for Squares, Dashboard Confessional's The Places You Have Come to Fear the Most, and a few select others, Coldplay's Parachutes will always act as an autobiographical link to a special time in the past. A time of growing up, when growing up wasn't happening fast enough. A time when I had no idea what was ahead of me, but it felt like it could be anything.

 

Give "Shiver" a listen, and check our Chris Martin's haircut. It - like Parachutes - has gotten better with time. 

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