And you wonder “What If.”
I don’t know how I didn’t connect the dots between this show and one of my other favorites, Next To Normal, based on how the music affects me. But, as I was looking into this show, I found out they are from the same musical minds.
This show came to me via the 2014 Tony Awards when Idina Menzel belted “Always Starting Over.”
As I listened to the entire cast recording, I realized I needed to look up the premise of the show, because I was getting a bit confused. Basically, Idina plays one woman who is going down two different paths her life could have taken. It’s a bit confusing from a plot standpoint, but the music is incredibly moving.
This first song is a cry to world. If you’ve ever lost someone, in any capacity, you can understand the pain. I would like to point out that in the original lyrics, it’s “fuck you for making me think that this life might be fair.”
Even if you haven’t lost a person, this number could also fit for someone who has had a major life event shift their trajectory. I’ve had moments when I’ve felt like this as well.
“Am I always starting over? In a brand new story. Am I always back at one after all I’ve done? ‘Cause I’ve burned all of my bridges. And learned every last lesson too. So how can I start new?”
In possibly my favorite song from the show, Brian Yorkey and Tom Kitt deliver a beautiful duet with “Some Other Me.” People often talk about an alternate universe where their life is different, and that’s exactly what this song is about.
And also about love.
The lyrics do an amazing job of capturing the struggles of growing older and accepting where your life has gone, based on the choices you’ve made. I’ve done a great deal of thinking along those lines myself, as I made the decision to move hundreds of miles away from everything I’ve ever known.
What would my life be like today if I hadn’t moved four years ago? Would I be married? In my own house? Writing this blog? Some other me might be living the dreams I wish I could – but also, some other me may not.
And that’s life.
“Now we’re old enough to know that one road ends where one begins. The moment where the “what might be’s” turn into “might have beens.””
If we’re going to talk about love songs, we have to mention “You Don’t Need to Love Me.”
First of all, Anthony Rapp’s voice has always been one of my favorites. Combine that with the beautiful, heartfelt lyrics of this song and I’m in a puddle on the floor.
It reminds me of something a friend-zoned guy would sing to the girl he’s loved for years. He’s going to keep on loving her, and he doesn’t want anything in return for that love, just her to spend time with him and let him be in her life.
It’s perfect. It’s beautiful. And I’ll be singing this for the rest of the day.
“We can keep on being lonely. But we don’t have to be apart. And I’ll never even ask you, to let me have your heart. So I’ll never break your heart.”