Friday, January 2, 2009

What's New?

Recently my wife and I lost all the information on our hard drive. Away went hours of music on my iTunes. You'd think that losing hours of music would devastate a music aficionado such as myself. And yet, I was strangely relieved.

After scanning the "Top Ten CD" lists for 2008, I am ready to retire any pretense that I'm in touch with the best new music out there. I am not willfully ignorant—just short on time and old enough to know that even if I had the time, there are better things to do with it.

The digital revolution has really transformed how I connect to music. I'm ambivalent about the change. Whereas before I had a "stable" of artists to whom I'd devote my attention, now I have a warehouse. Too many artists, and so much music that I often listen to something only once or twice.

My living room is lined with shelves of vinyl and CDs. (Love you, Lisa, for not consigning them to the basement!) I'm proud that these records have survived all my moves. I cherish their presence and their ability to provide some continuity in my mind between past and present.

It's been a long time since I last posted on my blog. Perhaps I misunderstand the purpose of this form of communication—instead of offering daily ruminations, I'm always planning a definitive "piece." When I look at my posts, there's a sense of permanence there, so I want to make what I write worthwhile.

But then, that kind of writing would be work—pleasurable, but time-intensive. Plus the pay is lousy. So to keep this blog alive I have to change my way of thinking.

In future entries (which I promise will be much more frequent), I'll give you my rough drafts. Every day I am thinking about music and listening to it—I have to capture my thought or feeling immediately and relay it to you, patient readers!

Here are some topics that have been brewing and will be discussed in future posts.

1. Michael Franks—his peculiar genius, and why my wife abhors his music

2. Gilbert O'Sullivan—why I love this import

3. Elvis Costello's "Spectacle" show on the Sundance Channel

4. The joys of hearing music in an intimate setting

5. Sara Hickman—master businesswoman, what she represents to me, and why I draw inspiration from her vivacity

6. Michael Johnson—beautiful singer, terrific guitar player, severely underappreciated

Happy 2009 to everyone!

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