I am zooming through the English countryside on board a train, squatting on the floor as there are no seats and quietly humming along to my music. ‘What Can I do’, from The Corrs’ 1998 album ‘Talk on Corners’ pops up on my ‘ancient’ first generation iPod Shuffle. Miraculously it still works, no matter what I do to it.
I am shunted back through time. Thirteen year-old me is perched on the bottom shelf of my childhood bedroom, back in Wales. My face is wedged between the CD player and tape recorder on the top shelf. I am making a ‘love tape’ – my toes curl slightly at the thought. I was planning to secretly slip it to the boy I was ‘in love’ with at the time, his name escapes me now. But I know that I felt I would never not be in love with him, my love was alarmingly eternal. It is a late summers evening, sunlight is bouncing off the whitewashed walls of the driveway and slipping in through the slatted blinds on my window. I sing some sections of the lyrics into the tape recorder whilst dancing around my room, enjoying the heady sensation of teenage lust.
I don’t think the recording worked – what a bloody relief! Well, at least there is no hard evidence, only the immersive memory triggered by the song. But despite the blush provoking circumstances, the feelings garnered are those of happiness and hope. When I was in my early teens I don’t think anything mattered to me as much as love – or my fantasy of it – and summer sunshine. The Corrs lifted my spirits at breakneck speed and it took all my self-control not to sing along and dance through the train carriage. The joy was almost uncontrollable, I was travelling through time through music.
Their video is SO emblematic of 90s music videos. But, to be honest I probably imagined myself singing in a bathtub on a hillside.