Rod Stewart had the number 1 song in America during the week I was born in late 1976. That was back when he was singing songs that were produced specifically for him, not singing the various “songbooks” and “classics” he’s become known for since the century changed. His voice had a bit of a rough timbre to it even then, but it wasn’t anywhere near where it’s ended up. There was something about it that was youthful and mature at the same time.
Of course I didn’t hear the song back then. As a babe in the cradle all I listened to were lullabies and gospel hymns. I don’t remember those either, but I like to think they weren’t nearly as cool as Rod in his high-watered pants, shaggy hair, and cocky bravado. Now, as I listen to it through my headphones, I wonder what I would have been like if I had heard it back then, if it would have changed me in some essential way for the future.
The song is a feisty one too, a representation of that 70s spirit of free love and the excitement that comes from an adventure, in whatever form it takes. I like to think it’s a representation of me too, of the idea that on any given night I can shed this skin and be the person I was meant to be, whatever form that might take. If not tonight, then some night soon. And it will indeed be alright.