John Mellencamp, since I was what we now call a "tween," has forever occupied a special place in my heart. It's right below where I store my awe of John Lennon and Harper Lee. Their words speak to me on a level beyond typical lyrics and literature. I hear them not just with my ears, but from my soul right down to the hair follicles on my arms - witnessed by the unexpected goosebumps that materialize without notice.
Mr. Mellencamp's understanding of the human condition and his ability to express it with song touches me in a way that makes me feel connected to the world, less alone. Whether it is "Love and Happiness" or "Minutes to Memories" or "Jena," he often expresses the thoughts and feelings that I am unable to put into words myself. His down-to-earth spirit and ability to cut to the chase with words or paint are unparalleled in today's art.
Last night, I attended my sixth Mellencamp concert, making it the eighth time I've seen him in person. When the lights came up signalling the show was over, I felt much as my six-year-old daughter must feel when playtime is over and it's time to go to bed. My heart sank. I wanted more. Trying not to pout, there was no way to stall for just one more drink of water, and asking for another story was not going work.