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Wicked, weird, and wonderful

Buck 65 - London, UK - April 13, 2011I hate the question “What kind of music are you into?”

More specifically, I hate being expected to sum it up into one succinct answer of a couple broad genres or a few key artists. I can’t pin it down to just one area, and if I do, I feel it’s selling my varied taste pretty short. In no way do I think of myself as a music snob though. In fact, for true audiophiles out there, my eclectic mix of tunes I bop my head to would probably cause some cringing.

I’m just as likely to be found rocking out to The National as I to be found chilling with some Efterklang or grooving to LCD Soundsystem. I’ve held on to a fair bit of the Quebecois tunes I picked up from my time in Montreal (anyone else out there a Jean Leloup fan?!). Some of the stuff I like is downright bizarre. I’ll mix this all in with classical (Canon in D Major, any day) and mildly ridiculous synthpop into the same playlist. Oh, and I absolutely melt over anything featuring violins.

On thing I don’t do is write off any particular genre based on preconceived notions of how terrible it might be. I had a friend once who refused to listen to anything that was deemed to be too popular or mainstream, simply because it was popular or mainstream. My rebuttal to that was that, perhaps the tunes were popular because they were, you know, good. Of course, this isn’t the case in all instances (or even most of them, admittedly) – however, it’s a lame reason to write off otherwise decent music. Hell, if it’s a good tune, just enjoy it! I’m just not one of those to say “I like everything except [insert: country, rap, polka, whatever]. Not my style.

One thing I am completely enamoured with is the mashing up of multiple vastly different genres. I was blown away at a Buck 65 gig last week when he performed his usual white-trash hip-hop styled Wicked and Weird over Yann Tiersen’s Comptine D’un Autre Été, L’après-Midi, from the Amelie soundtrack. If you’ve gotten this far without writing off my musical taste, I urge you to give it a listen:

Is there a genre for this??

What this really boils down to is, after more than a year of scrobbling to my Last.fm account, it still can’t predict what I’ll be in to. I can’t be the only one suffering from this.

Of course, new music suggestions are always appreciated :)

20
Apr 2011
POSTED BY Janna Bastow
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Tough times, passed

Listening to: Hide and Seek – Imogen Heap

In the wake of a breakup some time ago, this unbelievably beautiful song moved me.  It resonated with my pain, and the raw lyrics reflected my own raw emotions.

Take this excerpt, for example:

Mm, what’d you say?
That you only meant well,
…well of course you did.

Mm, what’d you say?
That it’s all for the best, because it is?

Mm, what’d you say?
That it’s just what we need, you decided this…

What’d you say? Mm, what did you say?

The accusations, the confusion, the emptiness and echoes…

I had to stop listening to this tune for a bit – it reminded me too much of what I realised more and more was no longer there, no longer an option, even a shred of a possibility.

And then, one day, this track came on again.  

….. And I listened closely.  

…………. And it didn’t hurt anymore.

18
Feb 2011
POSTED BY Janna Bastow
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My Happy Song

Listening to: Solsbury Hill – Peter Gabriel

As of yesterday, this is the song that wakes me up in the morning, now set as my alarm.  This makes me happy indeed, as this song’s always brought a smile to my face.

Cheesy, I know. But I’m up with a little more bounce in my step this morning (and a whole hour earlier), so who’s complaining?

Why does it make me so cheerful?  Well, I suppose the tune in itself lends itself to that… and I do love a song I can (albeit sometimes quite terribly) sing along to.  Perhaps there’s also a bit of an association to moments in one of my all-time favourites, Vanilla Sky (note to self: I need to watch this film again soon!).

Or maybe because it can make even The Shining into a friendly family film:

Happy listening!  I’ll post more happy songs (and perhaps some not-so-happy songs) around here as I go on.

21
Jan 2011
POSTED BY Janna Bastow
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