I’ll let my 17 year old self write most of this one:
I’m listening to my “John Denver’s Greatest Hits” album. Leaving on a Jet Plane is playing now. It doesn’t make me cry anymore – unless I’m feeling gloomy anyhow. I usually get gloomy after hearing it though. Good God! I was mistaken. It does bring tears to my eyes.
I always thought being in love as different than I know it. I guess I had in mind being with my love – most of the time – not the other way around. And everyone calls me “lucky”. Anyone with a love so close doesn’t realize how lucky they are. But then – I am lucky – not because I am in love with an English guy – but that the person I love loves me back – and that boy / man is Jeremy.
I wrote that on March 25, 1975 – over thirty years ago. I remember (maybe it is in a journal somewhere) that I used to imagine it was Jeremy singing that song to me.
I didn’t marry Jeremy – we broke up nearly four years later after leaving on many jet planes. I don’t know if this song would make me gloomy if I heard it again. Probably not. Nostalgic perhaps, but not gloomy.
I tend to be a one musician at time person. I don’t know if that is normal or not, but there you have it. After my fleeting interest in Jack Wild and before I discovered Kate Bush I was a huge John Denver fan. Like with Kate Bush, it was the lyrics that caught and held me. Except for hearing songs on the radio, practically the only music I listened to during that time was John Denver’s music – the fact that I only had two of his albums meant that I listened to the same songs over and over and over…
One of my favorite songs on his Greatest Hits album was For Baby (For Bobbie). I pictured a man walking with his young son and showing him the wonders of nature. It was simple, and sweet and I liked it and made me think of what life would be like with a child of my own.
I remember seeing John Denver on a couple of TV specials, but the show that I remember the most was when he was on the Tonight Show – probably in 1973 or 1974. He may or may not have been wearing his signature glasses, but I suspect not. He was changing. When Johnny Carson (or Ed McMahon) urged him to say “Faaaaaaar Out!” he refused, saying, in essence, he was beyond that. I lost a little respect for him that night, and it was not much later that I put his albums away.
I never told too many people about my John Denver obsession – the ones I did, laughed at me. Still, when I hear a song that was on one of those two albums that I particularly liked, I usually smile and even tap my foot a little.