songbook: little secrets

In M|H’s weekend feature, songbook, I’ll be looking at some of my favorite songs. Some I haven’t listened to in years, some I keep in regular rotation, but all having in some way informed my life, my taste, and and how I view music.

Passion Pit – Little Secrets

In late 2009 I lived in San Francisco and interned for 826 Valencia – non-profit writing and tutoring center fronted by the Pirate Supply Store that brought in money for the center. In the bay is Treasure Island, former home to a World’s Fair exhibit and a naval base. Once a year the island plays home to the Treasure Island Music Festival, and while I worked for 826 we set up a booth and hawked our wares (eye patches, pirate flags, what have you). I worked the night shift, so during the day I was free to roam and enjoy the bands. One of those bands was Passion Pit.

The first time I heard Passion Pit had been a few months earlier at a friend’s house, soundtracking his post-breakup beard removal. I loved Manners, and was excited to see Passion Pit play. While I knew they were fun and made generally happy music, I had no idea that they’d be able to move the crowd as much as they did. It was a perfect sunny day on the island, and the crowd was cheerful and engaged. When “Little Secrets” came on, though, the whole festival exploded. Even in the best of circumstances, there’s always that smattering of people in the crowd who are just too cool or too afraid to dance and sing along. However, for a few minutes, I literally could not find a single person who wasn’t smiling, swaying, singing. Hands were in the air, getting higher and higher. I’m sure someone, somewhere was standing arms crossed, but not anywhere near me. It’s incredibly rare to see a thousands of people transform for a common purpose in a matter of seconds. Hearing “Little Secrets” live that day is one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever experienced.