I’ve spent most of my morning trying -and failing- to find a very specific live video of The Dolphin’s Cry by Pennsylvanian alt-rockers, Live.
The video, in which the band appeared to be performing at some large, outdoor music festival in the middle of summer, began with Live lead singer Ed Kowalczyk introducing the song with the following words:
“This song is not necessarily about dolphins…unless those dolphins happen to be fucking.”
I saw that video precisely once, but I remember those words, and the entire performance, as vividly today as if I’d seen it a thousand times, indeed, as if it were playing out right in front of me.
It wasn’t just that the song itself was great – it was the way it was performed, with a level of passion and intensity which -at the point in my teenage years- I had never encountered, or even believed possible, before.
Another Life Changing Video from The Tommy Vance VH1 Friday Rock Show
Like a number of the songs from around this time, I’m almost 100% certain that I saw this video late one Friday night on the hidden TV gem that was The Friday Rock Show, presented by legendary British DJ, Tommy Vance.
I remember sitting up late one night, the bright summer sun that surrounded the band on stage in stark contrast to the darkness beyond my window, and feeling completely mesmerised.
I wasn’t old enough to appreciate concepts like the soul or spirituality, or even to fully articulate how this one live performance made me feel, but with the benefit of almost 20 yaars of life behind me, I finally can.
This song moved me.
It stirred something in me, it made me feel, and I mean really feel, to fully experience all of my emotions at once and be swept away by them, even if it was only for several minutes whilst watching a rock video.
I may not have been able to explain nor appreciate that feeling back then, but I knew I wanted more of it.
I quickly fell in love with the power and beauty of Live’s music. Even today, I haven’t been able to find a band that creates such an incredible sense of passion and awe with every song.
The closest I ever got was my beloved Counting Crows, but even they rarely match Live for pure, unadulterated intensity.
Today, Live are still one of the few bands I turn to when I really need to connect with how I’m feeling, to really experience my own emotions in all their rawness and intensity, all thanks to one video that seemed to come into my life for a few fleeting minutes, and then disappear again -seemingly forever.
I may never find that video again (though if you do read this and can help, I would love to hear from you), but you know what? That’s OK, because even 17 or so years later, I can see every moment of it as clear in my head today as though it were playing out right in front of me.
The Dolphin’s Cry by Live is the eleventh song in my list of 52 songs that changed my life. Other entries in this list are below: