Thursday, August 26

I’m going with… MUSIC!

All right, I’ll admit it. I’m a bit of a music junkie. And like any true junkie I’m not all that particular about what I put into my system as long as it gets the job done. I want my music to transport me someplace, to take me to different musical or emotional landscapes. I want to feel it pulsating through my body, chiming away in my brain, pushing different buttons, awakening forgotten memories and cementing new ones. And if it can’t do all that then it better be able to at least make me tap my foot…that’s the least it’s gotta be able to do.

You see, I don’t care what I’m listening to as long as it’s good. (It’s also important that you know that I’m the captain of these here ears on the sides of my head and I decide what is and isn’t good…got that, matey? If not, cast off before I make you swab the decks or send you off to Davy Jones’ Locker.) I don’t care what anyone says, all music is personal; if it doesn’t move you then it’s worthless. You might be able to convince me that an artist has talent but if I don’t feel his or her music in that inward place that some people call a soul then I’m not going to listen to it for very long.

Most people who borrow my ipod don’t listen to it for very long. It’s all over the place: jazz, rock, punk, classical, country and everything far and in between. One of the things that bother me most about my old friends is that most of them are stuck in their golden years of music. You know what your golden years of music are, right? It’s that period of your life between 12 and 25. The years when music becomes the soundtrack of your life, when you wake up and go to sleep listening to music, when you actually live inside of it soaking up the lyrics, searching for their meanings, and diving in deep probing for answers. You reach out to people who like the same music you do and categorize others who don’t. It’s a time of your life when music rules all. Unfortunately some people never move beyond the music they listened to in their golden years. They listen to the same tired songs year in and year out all the while trying to convince you that they just don’t make music like that anymore. But I’m not buying what they’re selling. My ears didn’t close at 30 and they’re still wide open. There’s a TON of good new music out there.

If you’re like me you love to get lost in your music and one of my favorite musical black holes to dive into is The Black Cab Sessions. Maybe you’ve seen it before. It’s so simple that it’s beautiful. Take an artist, put him or her in an English cab, drive them around London and let them sing. It’s intimate, moving and can be a huge time drain if you let yourself get caught up in it. Here’s a link to one of my favorites that always knocks me out, Amanda Palmer covering Radiohead’s “Creep” on a ukulele. Enjoy if you dare but I’m warning you once you venture inside the Black Cab Sessions it’s hard to leave. (Warning: Explicit lyrics.)

"Creep" on a ukelele.

How about you? Is music the center of your universe? And if so, what moves you the most?


Wendy Toliver said...

I've never heard of the Black Cab Series. It sounds interesting!

What moves me? Children singing or performing their little hearts out. Especially if it's their own song or they take creative freedoms.

I do go back to my Golden Years of music quite often, but I'm completely happy with today's music as well.

kathryn said...

You're right--I'm totally addicted! That was amazing.

I have a soft spot for music by or about siblings, but not in the Donny and Marie verity. Tegan & Sara and The Kin are two personal favorites, especially their songs Walking with Your Ghost and Abraham respectively.

Gerb said...

When my oldest was in Vocal Jazz in high school, his director (hello, Mr. Huber!) gave him what I consider to be one of the best gifts ever - he challenged the group to listen to all kinds of music - especially music they didn't think they would like. It really broadened his musical horizons.

Lucky for me, my son is the one who loaded the iPod the kids gave me a few years ago for Mother's Day. The mix of music and artists is all over the place and I love it.

h. Raven said...

The Black Cab series is great, and yeah, totally addicting. What a great idea!

The music I listen to is always linked to what's going on in my life, and what I'm writing. Or is that the same thing?

What really moves me are live performances. That's why I love discovering the Black Cab series. I'll listen to almost anything performed live because I love what happens between artist and audience. It's this energy that can't be captured in the studio.

So, rock, pop, classical, rap, country, indie, folk, blues - anything. If it's live, I'll give it a listen.


Amanda Ashby said...

Wow - I've never heard of the Black Cab sessions but Creep is one of my fav songs ever, and this is an awesome cover of it!!!!

I love music. I'm a total gum-chewing, card-carrying pop-tart but my husband is into EVERYTHING so he expands my musical horizons in a way that would never happen if left to my own devices. And every now and then I introduce him to a modern artist that he likes!!!

Right now I'm totally obsessed with Florence and the Machine!