On Music: Or Why I am the World’s Biggest Fangirl of The National

If you follow me on the Twitter, you may have noticed that I love am slightly obsessed with The National. I’m a fangirl. I’ve pretty much never ever been a fangirl of anything in music, teevee, movies ever in my life like this. OK, I do really love Mad Men, but I’m not sure I would wait in line for hours to see Don Draper…well, maybe that’s not a good example. Anyway, my point is, I really love The National. And frankly, if you listen to them and you don’t love them too? I’m not even sure we can ever be friends. I take my love that seriously.

So, let me explain. For me, The National makes me so, so happy. I love them. I have only seen them twice, but the first time I actually cried at one point and it was like Christmas and I was five. I was so glad that someone special to me like @bitchylibrarian experienced that with me. I bought those tickets for my birthday. :) Live, they are fucking amazing. I really do love them all, but Matt’s voice? It’s like liquid sex topped with bacon and honey. It’s fucking beautiful. Someone recently told me they couldn’t understand him because he mumbles and I thought, “ARE YOU FUCKING INSANE? THAT VOICE IS THE MOST BEAUTIFUL THING I HAVE MAYBE EVER HEARD.” Literally, whenever I have a hard time or maybe when I’m just a little wined out, I just need to lay in bed and listen to him and aaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. Peace.

The National is my personal symbol of when I found peace in my life. They are like my own music soundtrack. I’ve never really experienced music in a way as deeply as I have with this band and with music in general as I have in the last three years or so. When my whole life sort of unraveled, I started to listen to music and in a much different way than I ever had before and I listened to different music because well, I just did. I got lost in it. In 2010 at one of life’s low points, I found High Violet. Terrible Love was beautiful.

It takes an ocean not to break.

For my life at that point, it was perfect.

When you lose something, well, finally let go of some thing toxic in order to save yourself and protect others, there’s a point where you think you might never, ever recover. But, when you make the choice and get out and say goodbye to someone before it brings you down, you find your peace.

But, I won’t follow you into the rabbit hole.


Within days, I basically downloaded and obsessively listened to every single album The National put out. Every song. That voice. The music. It was beautiful and sad and tragic and happy? Well, it made me fucking happy. I was hooked.

Enter the song “Start a War.” Oh. Em. Gee. I will never love a song and hate it at the same time like this one, I am fairly certain.

Walk away now and you’re going to start a war.


I spent hours listening to The National. Sobbing. Usually in the bathtub. That money I spent on itunes was so much better spent than my therapist. It didn’t ask me how something made me feel, it just made me feel it, let it go, and be strong again. The music is so beautiful. They lyrics are such poetry.


And now, they’ve become one of the most important things to me…the new me. The one who wanted more for herself and wanted to be happy. She loves The National. And loves life to its fullest. Peace and happiness.

If you’ve never had a song, or piece of music, touch you deep down inside of your soul, you haven’t listened to the right song. The song that just makes you stop and listen and pause. And find your peace. And makes you turn it up so loud that you can feel it.

The National got me through a lot of sorrow. (ha, that’s so funny and if you don’t get it, boo on you).

Sorrow found me when I was young. Sorrow waited, sorrow won. Sorrow they put me on the pill. It’s in my honey, it’s in my milk.

Fucking hell, right? Sigh.

But, The National didn’t make me sad. It made me happy. It helped me heal my soul. Their music helped me process and get rid of my sadness. I mean, hello? All The Wine, people.

I’m a perfect piece of ass. (Clearly, this is my theme song, no?) …. I’m a festival. I’m a parade. And all the wine is all for me.

I have probably drank 25 bottles of wine to that song.

And Cardinal Song. For serious. Fucking beautiful. There’s no other description. so….but anyway….

Jesus Christ, you have confused me. Cornered, wasted, blessed and used me.

Also? Best lyric ever? Maybe.

Didn’t anybody tell you how to gracefully disappear in a room?

I am at this new stage of my life and really am so happy about my life and my future. I freaking love Cleveland and Ohio. And The National are even from Ohio! :) (Could this get any cheesier?) I saw them a few weeks ago again in Cincinnati. It. Was. Amazing.

Because it’s the summer of just-fucking-do-it (I declared), I bought VIP tickets and we had front and center (and had air conditioning and cheap beer to balance out the not cheap beer) and I stood in the pouring rain, of course, before they came out. (I may have been tipsy and aided by one @bitchylibrarian in the buying of those tickets and I am not sad one bit). Best of all, I shared that experience with another someone special and the whole thing was just perfect :) . Like, omg, perfect and fantastic and amazing.

I can’t pick a favorite moment really but I thought I might explode from all of the emotion I was feeling. It was so freaking seriously exhilarating. And just when I thought it wouldn’t get any better, Matt Berninger handed over the wine bottle right before he walked off stage. I have to think it was all of the screaming of “ALL THE WINE.” Handed. It. Over. I have it. Prized possession? Yes. Fucking absolutely. And as much as I’d love to share more details of that moment, it’s a prized memory even more so. Full disclosure: he didn’t exactly hand it to me, but I have it. Because. ;)

But that wine bottle is why I clearly think I can just call him Matt. I mean, hello.

I may have actually had all the wine tonight. And I am coming off of an extremely exhausting, emotional week. And OMG so other feels going on in my head, but I want you to know that it’s OK to really stupidly love something and even be slightly obsessed (but not in a dangerous way) and really just love something that makes you happy with no regrets. And also, just sort of let some of my feelings about my fangirlness out there :)

Someone asked me recently what to listen to from The National. Boxer is still my favorite album, though the new one, Trouble Will Find Me, is my second favorite. But, it is ALL good. ALL. I promise.

Don’t make you read your mind, you should know me better than that.

I should live in salt for leaving you behind.

Liquid sex with bacon and honey. And all the wine.

I have my peace. I hope you have yours too.

If I stay here, trouble will find me.

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2 Responses to “On Music: Or Why I am the World’s Biggest Fangirl of The National”

  1. Chris says:

    It’s not really my style but I can see why you like them. Still, the lead singer is a little tough to understand. At your recommendation I am listening to Boxer right now. The entire first song I thought he was singing about “baking pie”.

  2. Bitchy Librarian says: