Turn It Up
I recently had the opportunity to speak in front of about 130 people about "any subject related to writing", which as you can imagine was extremely exciting but also extremely intimidating.
I really, viscerally do not get why Tom Jones was as famous as he was.
Am I too young? Cynical? Just squeamish about men who wear their shirts unbuttoned too far?
(Yes, yes, YES.)
Similarly, I really viscerally Do Not Get the song "It's Not Unusual". But I still love it. And here's why.
For those moments when life seems a little bit too close and real, like when I saw hyenas in a zoo in Singapore. It's a modern zoo, so you can't see they're in a cage.
The song: The National, "Slow Show"; 2007
I mentioned a few weeks ago that my house was broken into, and posted a Dusty Springfield song.
One cool thing about having had this blog for over a year: I can now start to see patterns in the way I listen to and enjoy music, which is really interesting because usually when I am in a Phase I pretty much feel like that Phase is the alpha and omega, the way things have always been and the way they always will be.
Girl groups: I recently mentioned them!
This song is notable for being the first song by an all-girl group to reach #1 in the United States. (Just think of the many all-girl groups that have come along since then! And what we would do without them! Our worlds would be so much darker.)
It makes me respect somebody to learn they love the music of what we call "girl groups".
Last Friday night an unknown person kicked down the door to my apartment, rifled through my possessions, and stole some of them.
I've been thinking a lot recently about country music.
I keep thinking I'll write one post where I just break it all down, country music and why I love it and what's unique and special about it, and these ideas always seem within my grasp when they're inside my head but completely ineffective when I try to put them outside.
One of the greatest things about the time I spend at WCBN is how often I get to read liner notes.
I think these are generally an underappreciated art form.
Back in the summer I read the liner notes to Paul Simon's latest album, which were written by Elvis Costello, and I've not forgotten this line:
I briefly mentioned this once but not in very much depth: I don't think of myself as an "albums" person.
I just respond to the song for the song. And think of songs for themselves.
I started my blog with a post about the Mature Break-Up Song.
In the almost-year since then I've wrestled a lot with the question of what my blog is about and for.
Editor's Note: The following post is presented in the form of a conversation between myself and my dear friend Emma Claire Foley, who recently revived her own blogging efforts with Having An Empty Mind. When I asked her to describe her blog, she said, "Uh. .
it's been a while since I wrote here, although I have been thinking about it every day, because that's what you do with something you love.
My mind has been occupied with a million other things, most notably and tangibly a very large upcoming international trip,
but more ineffably, the question of happiness.
One thing I am completely willing to admit about myself is that, where it comes to matters of media and culture, I am so stubbornly conservative as to be, like, one of those mountain trolls post-turning-into-stone.
And I don't mean like drive like drive in a car, I mean like drive like be driven.
Earlier today I was in a situation that does not hit me where I am strongest: a large dark room filled with mostly-strangers having emotions.
(Cigarette smoke used to crowd away some of the overwhelming emotion-ness of bars but now there is just no respite!)
By the time you read this, it will be my 25th birthday.
Also the first birthday LITERALLY IN MY ENTIRE MEMORY OF MY ENTIRE LIFE that I have not felt some angst about being a year older.