Did you watch the Grammy’s Sunday night? The highlight for me was watching Adele perform her song, “Rolling in the Deep”. She sang her heart out and gave an expected amazing performance. It was her first live performance since she had a very delicate vocal cord surgery that saved her singing voice just 5 months ago. At the end of her song Sunday night you see her scan the audience with this look of victory, accomplishment and awe. My heart beamed with hers as she took it all in. She deserved that applause.
I totally remember the first time I heard her voice. It was March 2011, a beautiful bright sunny morning in Hollywood, CA. I was getting ready for work while listening to Kevin and Bean on 106.7 KROQ, as I do most mornings. The song came on and I heard this cool, clear voice sing “There’s a fire starting in my heart, reaching a fever pitch and its bringing me out the dark…” My ears perked up. The song got stronger, drum beats louder… “The scars of your love remind me of us, I can’t help thinking that we almost had it all. The scars of your love, they leave me breathless, I can’t help feeling, we could have had it all… Rolling in the deep… you had my heart inside of your hand, and you played it, you played it to the beat.” I said to myself, “Who is this girl? Love those lyrics? I need this song!” I downloaded the album right then and there and listened to it until… well, actually, I’m still listening to it!
It’s meaning has evolved for me, and she’s reported it has for her too, but still, the experiences she sings about on the album resonated with me profoundly. “Rolling in the Deep” and subsequently the entire album 21, translated internationally to millions of people because heartache is such a unifying human emotion. Nothing can illicit empathy from the collective whole like the pain of a broken heart. Its both physical and emotional, and although circumstances vary, the pain of lost love, the emptiness of missing someone, the bitter taste of betrayal… well, that’s universal.
It was totally Adele’s night. She won Album of the Year and Best Pop Vocal Album for 21, an album that offered me so much comfort last year. She took Song of the Year, Record of the Year, and Best Short Form Music Video for “Rolling in the deep”. In addition, she was honored with Best Pop Solo Performance for “Someone Like You“, a song that still rips at my heart.
In her acceptance speech she conveyed how surprised she was that the album did as well as it did. After all, she said, she wrote it about a relationship that was “rubbish”. What she wasn’t expecting is how universal it is to have a relationship that is rubbish! How many of us have lost a lover? Worse when you lose your lover to someone else! Who among us hasn’t totally misjudged someone so completely, you wonder what the hell you were thinking in first place? We go through all that just for a chance at the high that comes from love…
Not to put anyone’s personal business on shout, but just among my circle of love-inspired companion seeking friends, both male and female, our personal misgivings have resulted in countless sleepless nights, an ocean of tears, volumes of bad poetry, and even some regrettable tattoos. Collectively there have been lost jobs, forfeited houses, failed marriages, restraining orders, unrecovered money (a lot of money), relinquished expensive and lovely home furnishings (stolen by a certain trifling bottom feeder). We have lost friends, accrued credit card debt, ruined our credit, not to mention reputation, and lost dignity. The list can probably go on, but you get the idea.
Yes, love really is blind, but eventually you see again. You become stronger and better for the pain you endured. I assure you, it never comes without its lasting lesson. One of my favorite quotes from Master Rumi says, “My heart is like a vast rose garden of light. An ocean of agony drowned it again and again, but it became a warrior after being slaughtered a hundred times.” In another quote Rumi observes, “When the heart becomes whole it will know the flavors of falsehood and truth”. Word. And I think Adele would agree too.
Most casualties of love are devastating, but you have to find your way back from that some how. Adele put her pain to music and came out of the experience an international Pop star! It is easy to get stuck in the misery and tale of your loss, but remember, you still have you! Put that pain to use like Adele did and be assured that there is a more intelligent force guiding your life, even if you don’t see the light at the end of the tunnel just yet. In Adele’s case, that douche bag who left her had to rip her in two so that she could have the experience of lost love, write a whole album about it and become a pop sensation, while simultaneously helping to thousands, maybe millions of people who suffered a similar loss. It was all in the master plan for her life. I’m just saying. Further, I believe the same is true for all of us…
Adele rocks for not only being an amazing singer, songwriter and artist, but also for surviving! She endured her heartbreak, created something beautiful, shared it with the world and landed on top of her game after all the dust settled. She may never know how much comfort and support she lent me during my unearthing last year, but I will always know, and for this, I will be a lifelong fan.
Congratulations Adele. You are beautiful, talented, inspiring, and I love you. xo Dre