Around the World to Get Lucky
Yeah, it’s about Daft Punk
I grew up in a antiquated music household. You live in the midwest, anyone can guess that it’s likely two things. Old 60’s and 70’s Rock and Roll and Country Music. I spent a nine hour car ride on the oldies station going to visit my grandma. My parents listened to this music on repeat, it was their music.
It wasn’t my music though.
My music was found in a couple spots. Movies, which typically in the 90’s when I was growing up had a featured tune. Smash Mouth and the rise of Ska were one of my first “Aw yeah, I gotta listen to this!” moments. Make your jokes, Smash Mouth was the 90’s Nickelback and yet Astro Lounge was pretty good for its time.
The second place I found music is the source of this. Full disclosure, I had to google to make sure I got the date right but it was November of 2001. The world was losing its mind, people were pointing fingers at everyone and anyone who might be suspicious. It was like Equilibrium with Christian Bale or Fahrenheit 451 where anything not normal was burned or destroyed.
It was late, cold, and I was up late on a Friday night, no doubt playing something like Red Alert 2 or Roller Coaster Tycoon 2 on an old CRT monitor.
My life was games and anime. Dragon Ball Z, Gundam Wing, Sailor Moon, if it was hand drawn, it was in my strike zone. I hadn’t quite gotten into StarCraft yet but in a couple months I’d get sucked into the online hellscape of Battle(dot)Net.
That particular night I went to tune into Toonami to watch uncut Gundam Wing and whatever reruns they dropped. Toonami’s Midnight Run by the way would eventually become Adult Swim. Shows like Space Ghost Coast to Coast, The Brak Show, stuff like that, all began right there at 11pm Central Time.
I didn’t get Gundam Wing or Space Ghost Coast to Coast…
I got Daft Punk.
Have your mind blown up like in “Scanners”
That’s what occured, I was put into a coma of pure enthrallment. I didn’t move, I wasn’t hungry, I watched the commercials.
I was 13 years old and watching commercials. That’s the equivalent of being stuck in a traffic jam but being like “Nah, we’re good here.”
One More Time / Aerodynamic / Digital Love / Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger
My whole world was thrown for a loop. It was music. It was music with cartoons in it. I couldn’t get enough. The world didn’t have DVR back then, but I knew immediately whatever I just listened to was required by law for myself. This was my music, this was what I’d been waiting to hear.
Between Daft Punk and the Gorillaz, which also totally warped my music habits and got me in to trouble with my high school jazz band, I was screwed for life. Electronic Dance Music or European Dance Music became my niche and thank god I wasn’t alone on that November evening.
Daft Punk’s Discovery, their second album was just an atom bomb of bangers. Even songs that weren’t like, as good on that album would be number ones if they were absolutely surrounded by these hits. Imagine buying an album that has four songs in a row that just level you before it’s over. Now imagine that they turned the whole damn album into a movie (Interstella 5555 for the record). I bought the album, I bought the movie, I watched and listened to this album till my Walkman broke.
You just got me feeling so free
It’s been near twenty years since that all happened. The couch I was sitting on when that occured is still in my living room, maybe lacking the oomf in the cushions from being 20 years old now. We’ve changed TVs, I’ve built several computers, went to college (cough twice cough), fell in and out of love, grown up, lost and gained friends. Daft Punk was there like an old photo I kept in my wallet. I’d still play “Discovery”. I remembered walking through the mall and head banging to Robot Rock. Get Lucky and “Random Access Memories” was the summer sound track I listened to in 2013*, though listening now I realize I was a bit too young to understand all the gravitas that album carried.
Daft Punk put out a video titled “Epilogue” on their youtube on Monday, February 22, 2021. Fans went berserk, the ride was over. The two musicians, whom had made millions of fans fall in love with faceless ‘androids’, were done. We got five albums, one of them being Tron: Legacy which anyone with a pulse should probably listen to at least one.
Where it goes from here is anyone’s guess. I’m just glad a 13 year old sat and wanted to watch a dumb cartoon talk show with a 1960’s character that November evening. They got a lifelong appreciation for music, that played in the foreground and background of their life.
That kid needed to hear it, one more time.
(Edit: Random Access Memories came out in 2013, not 2011 as previously stated. — DM)