There wasn’t a cloud in the blue sky as my friend and I drove on the highway.
She was taking me to see the ocean for the first time, the Jersey Shore. We had forgotten to grab CDs for the trip (and iPods still weren’t very widespread; plus, her stereo system didn’t have an auxiliary jack anyway) and realized we had, in fact, brought only one—Counting Crows’s August and Everything After.
Though some of Counting Crows’s songs were part of my musical vernacular at that point (“Mr. Jones and Me” and “Accidentally in Love” were always quite popular) I had never listened fully to their debut album. It was fourteen years old by the time I first listened to it on that trip to the shore and my immediate reaction was, “They are so much more than what I’ve reduced them to.”