I read so many posts by so many people which are given musical themes, songs of the day, favorite lyrics. And I always wonder if it is something I should be doing. And then I dismiss that thought; my musical tastes are mine, and no one else's. They're eclectic, a bit dated, sometimes obscure, or just random...and did I mention they're mine? Why would anyone else want or need them? On the other hand, I am determined to blog more while I have the time, and have nothing much to blog about. But, I have music. So, it's logical really. Added to that the fact that commenters are for the most part mysteriously absent at the weekends, and well, this is ideal. By the time anyone comes by, there'll be something more interesting to comment on. You can hope, at least.
So, I've done the obvious; I set Phiggy, my beloved iPod, to shuffle, and wrote down the first twenty results...I meant to do ten, but this is kind of addicting. I give them to you here, with some minor commentary, quoted lines, and so on. Feel free to shake your head in misbelief. You'll notice I'll be shaking my head too, on occasion...I've managed to accumulate a lot of stuff, from a variety of sources, and some of it's a bit odd. It's listed artist, song, album.
1) Pedro Abrunhosa & Os Bandemónio, Se Eu Fosse um Dia o Teu Olhar, Tempo - I once gravely offended a Portuguese acquaintance by referring to Pedro Abrunhosa as Portugal's answer to Vanilla Ice. That being said, I have far too much by him. It's a legacy of going to the Feira da Ladra often when I lived in Lisbon, and, well, buying lot of cd's, for the most part much poppier stuff than I would ever put up with in English. This song is quite catchy though, I think, but I am still shaking my head.
2) Jorge Palma, Viagem na Palma da Mão, Dá-me Lume-O Melhor de Jorge Palma - I've stopped shaking my head. He's the coolest, and I get very annoyed that I don't know anyone else who is at all impressed, or even interested. Perhaps because this is lyrics-driven music, and no one around me understands what he's singing. I've gone for months on end listening to just him. Because he's that good.
3) Toy Dolls, Blue Suede Shoes, Dig that Groove Baby - I am not sure why I have this, and suspect that it was put there by someone else (Thor uses my iPod sometimes, and he's added his own playlist). I do like the Dolls, but they're a bit tedious after a while, by which I mean about mid-song (except I've Got Asthma, which is just classic).
4) Elvis Costello & the Attractions, Alison (Live), Armed Forces (Bonus Tracks) - I have a habit of not liking the big, big hit by any given artist that I otherwise like a lot. But this works live, even though it's not my favorite studio song. I am clearly in the house alone, as Thor would request a song change after about a note of Elvis. Actually, when I am given the 'honor' of chosing the music, it's with the mandate of 'no 80's, and no Portuguese music'. Which puts a bit of a damper on things...well, my formative musical years were the 80's, and I bought a lot of cd's when I was in Portugal. It's not my fault.
5) Woody Allen, Mechanical Objects, Standup Comic - this is a recent acquisition. He makes being messed about by an technologically advanced elevator in retaliation for having beaten up a disrespectful television a perfectly natural occurence. You can simply not top it. He is master of the absurd.
6) They Might Be Giants, Ana Ng, Lincoln - I can't say I know the lyrics to many songs, but to this one I do. 'I don't want the world, I just want your half'. And I've spent more time than I should admit forming a mental picture of the opening lines ('make a hole with a gun perpendicular/ to the name of this town in a desktop globe/exit wound in a foreign nation/shows us the home of the one this was written for'...don't tell me you haven't thought about this one, too...no really, don't tell me).
7) Giuseppe Verdi, Alfredo, Alfredo, di questo cuore, La Traviata - yes, it's true. I don't make playlists. I just play it all together in a big jumbled heap. I've been told that in this way, I destroy the pleasure of listening to opera. To which I respond with a very well-thought out, 'Tough. It's how I like it.' I know nothing about opera, really, other than the ones I've actually seen. I've seen this one more than once, but I couldn't at all tell you what's happening in this part.
8) Monty Python, Sit on my Face, The Final Rip-Off - no words need be said. A classic song by icons of comedy.
9) Richard Wagner, Wie hehr erkenn ich unsrer Liebe Wesen!, Lohengrin - I've never seen it, know nothing about it, and the soprano is a bit weak. I'm slowly shaking my head.
10) Moloko, Sing it Back, Chillout Mix - the concept of 'chillout music' is palpably boring. That being said, this compilation is often background music when we have people over for dinner, and there's some very listenable stuff on it. Like this.
11) Dan Turèll & Halfdan E., untitled, Åbningstiden - Dan Turèll was a hippie author/poet/I don't know what else. I have this cd and another, each one being spoken word with a band backing. His Danish is very clear, and I really should listen to it more. What I understand of it, it's so funny. But there's a lot I don't get. Like this one, for instance. Could he be...talking on the phone? Your guess is as good as mine.
12) Rob Wasserman (with Edie Brickell and Jerry Garcia), Zillionaire, Trios - Jerry Garcia died the month before I moved to Portugal. I was very sad, not because I was especially a deadhead (although I liked the idea of it), but because I harbored a desire to see the Dead in Europe. Edie Brickell I'm fairly ambivalent about, but I like her voice. This is an otherwise nothing special album, but Zillionaire just works somehow.
13) Tracy Chapman, Why?, Tracy Chapman - Yes, why, exactly? I'm not sure I should admit to this, but I am shaking my head. I truly liked this album when it came out, but I don't feel it as I used to. Well, I should reword that. I still like it musically, but the lyrics just sound overstated.
14) Cat Stevens, Maybe You're Right, Mona Bone Jackon - this may be the artist I've liked for the most time, ever since seeing Harold and Maude (my early favorite film, with Cat Stevens soundtrack) when I was about 12. It may hold the record for the artist whom I've sung along with the most while driving (back in my California driving days). I'm in awe by the fact that he spent so much time searching for faith...and then actually found what he was looking for. It's not the answer I would have chosen, but I'm impressed anyway.
15) Bob Dylan, I'll Keep it with Mine, Biograph - 'How long can you search for what is not lost?' You can always count on Bob to come up with the important questions. 'I can't help it if you think I'm odd.' Yes, that's about right. Hey, nice harmonica there, Bob. I had pictures of him in my school locker in high school.
16) John Lennon, Instant Karma!, The John Lennon Collection - I can't explain John Lennon. He spouts platitudes. 'We all shine on, everyone.' What does that mean anyway? And yet, I like it. It's pleasant. And, sad as I am to admit it, pleasant is not bad. I'm clearly getting very, very old.
17) David Bowie, We are the Dead, Diamond Dogs - My teenage goal was to have all of his albums. I started buying them when they started being released on cd by Ryko disk, and then lost interest, or maybe ran out of funds, I don't remember which, after this one. 'You're dancing where the dogs decay, defecating ecstacy', not as pleasant as John Lennon. And that's not bad, either. But I'm still getting old.
18) The Prodigy, One Love, Hackers Soundtrack - I haven't seen this film, and don't have anything else by any of the bands on the cd, but it's a cool cd. I'd classify it as chillout, and play it during dinner. Otherwise, it's listenable, if a bit repetitive.
19) Fleetwood Mac, Sara, Greatest Hits - there's a (no-longer) secret part of me that likes old mellow classic rock. More proof of how old I really am. It's not my fault, it's Stevie's voice. She's addictive. I have an Eagles album, too...how's that for too much information?
20) Handel, Affetuoso, Watermusic Suite #3 - and it's all capped off by 46 sublime seconds.
I'm impressed you've made it this far, and I thank you. Now, I'm off to hear what comes next, and next, and even next, and to curse Phiggy for all the cool stuff that she didn't play in the first 20 (like the Rammstein song she's playing now).