VAST 19 – an iPodyssey – by Patinahead

VAST 19 – an iPodyssey

by Patinahead

Somehow, I’ve managed to get access to The Danielle’s entire music library. These are my musings as I navigate the largest and most amazing collection of music in the world. Enjoy!

PART NINETEEN

Away for a week and the unthinkable happened.  Due to a failure of communication, the iPod’s memory is erased in what amounted to a nanosecond.  O!  How quickly things can change.  I equate it with the sudden abrupt shift that occurs in a car crash or industrial accident, where you wake up stunned, in shock at the new state of things.  So.  No iPod.  I revert to internet radio on my phone, which works okay, but frequently dies for no reason and kills the phone battery.  This lends itself to days where I have to charge it every three hours, arranging my life around its limitations.  On the other hand, I remember the love I once had for KALX, the frequency and intimacy of our meetings, the way it shaped my days.  I feel so disloyal, my affection so easily shifted.   Now that radio is what I have, it’s what I prefer.   How long will this last?   Do I dare ask The Danielle to re-bestow her riches upon me?  Am I still worthy?

[Editor’s Note:  Moral of the story?  Never ever ever never plug your thing into anyone else’s thing.  Ever.]

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VAST 18 – an iPodyssey – by Patinahead

VAST 18 – an iPodyssey

by Patinahead

Somehow, I’ve managed to get access to The Danielle’s entire music library. These are my musings as I navigate the largest and most amazing collection of music in the world. Enjoy!

PART EIGHTEEN

I’m starting to see the value of the iPod outside of the normal listening-to-music uses.  As in, a surveillance aid.  Kind of like when wearing dark sunglasses, you can be in the presence of those you want to listen to/see and they don’t realize you’re doing it.  All I have to do is turn off the volume but leave the earbuds in place and I’m slightly invisible.  And I LOVE overheard conversations.  Especially the ones that are uncensored because they think they’re not being overheard, good for restaurants/coffee shops/waiting in line/BART/etc.  A little rhythmic head nod helps with the illusion that you’re no threat.   Related is the “I can’t hear you so I’m going to ignore you, you obnoxious person I don’t want to deal with right now” use, giving you an excuse to just NOT ANSWER if you’re asked a stupid question by someone unworthy of your attention.   They don’t know you can hear them.  It’s like instant, convenient deafness.  Fabulous.

VAST 17 – an iPodyssey – by Patinahead

VAST 17 – an iPodyssey

by Patinahead

Somehow, I’ve managed to get access to The Danielle’s entire music library. These are my musings as I navigate the largest and most amazing collection of music in the world. Enjoy!

PART SEVENTEEN

No profundities today (if there ever really are…).  Just:  I CAN’T STAND ANI DIFRANCO!!!   ugh.  OMG.  WTF?!   Why is she popular?  I totally don’t get it.  All breathy and precious and singing the same song with the same beat over and over again.  Torture.

VAST 16 – an iPodyssey – by Patinahead

VAST 16 – an iPodyssey

by Patinahead

Somehow, I’ve managed to get access to The Danielle’s entire music library. These are my musings as I navigate the largest and most amazing collection of music in the world. Enjoy!

PART SIXTEEN

The Danielle and I are concurring: songs sound better in shuffle mode.  Why is this??  I’m always amazed how many songs I get in shuffle and I think “yeah, I  love this, let’s listen to the whole album!” and then I do and not only does the album disappoint, but the actual song that got me started in that direction is kind of lame too.  It’s the college radio syndrome – I love being out of control, being surprised, not knowing what to expect.  Shuffle creates an openness that’s totally lacking when I put an album on.  Then I’m responsible – I chose it.  How many things in life are like this and we don’t realize it?

[Editor’s note: The Fratellis came up on shuffle recently, I switched to the whole LP, and I wasn’t disappointed.  Exception proving the rule?]

VAST 15 – an iPodyssey – by Patinahead

VAST 15 – an iPodyssey

by Patinahead

Somehow, I’ve managed to get access to The Danielle’s entire music library. These are my musings as I navigate the largest and most amazing collection of music in the world. Enjoy!

PART FIFTEEN

Underneath it all, we’re all bigots about something.  The civility seems so fragile sometimes, a thin veneer just waiting to tear, all hell breaking loose when it does.

This comes up because Beck is a hardcore Scientologist and I get a little creeped out by that.  A lot of my bigotry is not knowing anything about Scientology, really, and I imagine you wouldn’t be a bigot if the thing you hated was familiar to you.  Is bigotry rooted in ignorance?  Seems like a no-brainer.  Anyway, what I wonder is if his belief/cult thing has anything to do with how creatively unafraid he is.

Beck has got to be the most un-selfconscious (pop) musician I can think of.  It’s like he just makes the music and puts it out there, no matter what it is.  I listened to Sea Change yesterday and it is really intense – he created a door to his misery and gave us all a key, it feels that direct to me.  Then I listened to Stereopathic Soul Manure and, well, it sounds exactly like someone put a 4 track in their teenager’s bong-laden basement bedroom.  Does his weird/cult-like belief system aid this lack of inhibition?  Maybe that he has a THING separate from his identity that transcends his need for human approval, and it’s so amazing what comes out of that.

VAST 14 – an iPodyssey – by Patinahead

VAST 14 – an iPodyssey

by Patinahead

Somehow, I’ve managed to get access to The Danielle’s entire music library. These are my musings as I navigate the largest and most amazing collection of music in the world. Enjoy!

PART FOURTEEN

I’ve always been skeptical when a debut is dripping with strings.   There shouldn’t be too big a budget on a debut, it shouldn’t be overproduced, it should be stripped down and just the artist in a kind of lean state (um – Drops of Jupiter?).   Strings are pretty risky anyway in rock music – you’re taking the music of rebellion and trying to enhance it sonically with the tools of the master.  Sometimes it works, especially if someone just has a violin or cello as part of their band (The Arcade Fire, Dave Matthews, Geraldine Fibbers), but then there’s the Metallica S&M CD.  Think about the poor piccolo player trying to have some self-respect while tooling along to Master of Puppets.  James H. doesn’t even really sing so there’s no illusion that what they’re playing is “music” in any kind of traditional sense, so why the strings???  It just makes the music bloated and weird and I can’t get the image out of my head of a metal concert with an orchestra busily working away behind them in suits and ties.  It’s horrible.

VAST 13 – an iPodyssey – by Patina Head

VAST 13 – an iPodyssey

by Patina Head

Somehow, I’ve managed to get access to The Danielle’s entire music library. These are my musings as I navigate the largest and most amazing collection of music in the world. Enjoy!

PART THIRTEEN

You know how all the anti-drug messages are lost on those who would use drugs?  When I was in elementary school we had these pamphlets about how bad drugs were.  I remember them still – the cartoon mascot who was kind of rubbery and Michelin-Man like and told dire tales.  Even the font was memorable.  What I remember most is that I was far more inspired to try drugs than I was before reading the pamphlets.  I sought the anti-drug pamphlets out for ideas.   And really, I doubt there was anything that actually would have dissuaded me from using drugs back then.  I just wanted to 1) try everything out, 2) do what i wasn’t supposed to, and 3) have insider knowledge (a scourge I still feel and live).  Sure enough, I did enough drugs in high school to last a lifetime.  Which is good, because for the most part, I don’t anymore.

What does this have to do with music?

Well, I may have the only story that could convince someone that drugs have a downside.  I have long said that if there was one concert I would have loved to have seen it was Zappa (well, Michael Jackson too, but in a different way).  I mourned my lost opportunity when Frank Zappa died.  I was going through college journals recently and it turns out I went to a Zappa concert and I DON’T REMEMBER IT.    So, I open this journal (mostly full of bad poetry aimed at crushes), and there it is:  the ticket stub – stapled to the journal page.  Proof.   I might not have believed it otherwise, and it was a knife through the heart.