March 19: Sugar Shawn's Sucky Spotify Song List for Musically March 2022

March 19, 2022 - "19" by Paul Hardcastle

Spotify -

Song: 19

Artist: Paul Hardcastle

Album: The Very Best Of

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Yes, I did it intentionally. Nevertheless, this is one of those songs from my teenage years that has stuck with me in a pleasant way. Funny though, it reminds me of staying at my Grandma and Grandpa's house. During that time, my parents were divorced. We lived with my Dad at the time so on the weekends that we didn't go to our mother's, Dad would take my brother and me to spend the weekend with his parents. For a middle school-aged teen, there wasn't a lot to do there. Their neighborhood had shifted economically in the downward direction so it "wasn't safe" for an overprotective grandmother to let her grandsons roam the neighborhood, especially after dark.

I spent a lot of those dark hours in the room I stayed in reading Grimm's Fairy Tales and other books while listening to Top-40 at a low volume on the alarm clock lest I incur the wrath of both Dad and Grandpa for listening to "_____ music."

This doesn't explain why 19 stands out there but the reason for it was the lyrics are eerily relevant.

Grandpa fought in WWII in the Third Army but Dad didn't serve. Had he, he would have fought in Vietnam. Dad was physically unable for service due to a bad knee injury in high school. This topic would pop up from time to time at my grandparents' house. At this point in my life, Vietnam had ended only ten years earlier and even though it seemed forever ago at the time, WWII had ended just 40 years prior. They were still fresh topics in the minds and hearts of Americans.

Here is the twist...

The "19" song lyrics tied into those conversations. Grandpa, at age 26, was an older soldier in his unit ("In World War II the average age of the combat soldier was twenty-six.") Dad, had been able to serve, would have been drafted at 19 ("In Vietnam he was nineteen.") It was something I pondered without realizing I would one day serve myself. Ironically, I nearly split the difference (I was almost 22 when I enlisted.)

Funny how these things happen and a song can tie it all together.

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