One of my favorite subjects to kvetch about is the burden of obsessiveness.
I’ll give you an example. I tripped over a rock/jazz group called Durutti Column, the vehicle of a British guitarist named Vini Reilly. He has a really tasteful, distinctive ambient sound and groove. I listened to a couple of his albums, liked what I heard, and got my hands on his discography. Twenty-nine albums. I can’t say they all sound exactly alike, because I’m only up to #19. But, like it or not, I will keep plowing through the last ten. Just in case.
Get what I mean?
I don’t believe in radio. Why should I listen to someone else’s playlist hidden among the commercials? I don’t believe in Spotify. Why should I listen to an algorithm’s playlist? It seems I’m stuck with Jeff.
My usual listening schedule when I’m working from my home office is:
8:00 to 10:00 – music to align my synapses and give me courage to face the day: Bill Evans or Johnny Bach
9:37 (approximately) – second cup of coffee
10:00 to 4:00 – methodical, obsessive plowing through music I think I should expose myself to: Wild Man Fisher’s Greatest Hits, Finnish surf music, Outer Mongolian throat singing…
4:00 to 4:30 – listening for enjoyment: Buddy Holly, Luciana Souza, Bon Iver.
But believe it or not, even I like to have just plain fun sometimes. So a while back, I started making myself mixes for the car.
I work myself into a semi-conscious, filter-free trance, and spend an hour meandering through my library mentally blindfolded. I grab attractive tracks I seldom listen to, because they don’t fit into my obsessive, programmatic scheme. I call these Indefensible Collection I, Indefensible Collection II – I’ll let you extrapolate the rest. I’m up to #6. Why indefensible? Because they’re a sundry assortment. They have no rhyme or reason or common theme. They’re just a bunch of – this isn’t easy for me to write – songs I enjoy listening to.
I’d be embarrassed to listen to them in my office but about once a year I allow myself the guilty pleasure of reverting to my AM car radio (‘Fun, Fun, Fun’, ‘Dance, Dance, Dance’) adolescence. They pop up, unprogrammed, the sound of surprise, one after another. Now, that’s fun.
My recent carfare has been IM #6, 50 of which (not all 213 tracks) I’d like to share with you today. Many of them will never achieve their own SoTWs, but I love ‘em all, each and every one. I’ve made a concerted effort to curb my penchant for verboseness. Go, Jeff.