All jigsaw puzzles, craft projects, and home-based blockade hobbies are now forgotten and dusty. A product of a cursed era that I don’t want to think about again.
However, there was one pandemic entertainment that I really liked and wanted to continue. It’s listening to music. Properly, deeply I’m listening to it.
This week, Spotify bowed to a request from Adele, Removed shuffle button from album page.. You can understand the artist’s desire to save their track list. Before the blockade, I listened unplanned and randomly. It was on in the background: the ambient noise when I cooked provided a tempo for the risotto to stir. When I felt like listening properly, I returned to my old favorites.
But during the long blockade of Sydney, I wanted to mix it. For a couple of months on weekdays, I woke up, picked one artist and stuck to them all day long. I put all my energy into music, going out for small walks and sitting in chairs to listen. I start with the most popular songs and then go through the top albums (yes, on their intended track list).As the days go by – and Spotify The algorithm led me deep into their catalog – I listened all the time doing housework and training.
I shared what I heard every day with Twitter. My account isn’t up now, but a follower joined me during the blockade and I was able to spend my day with the same artist. People who know more about music than I do would recommend moving away from the algorithm and choosing which album to start with and which track to focus on.
To narrow it down, I set some rules. Focus on Canon – Music that others have been passionate about but passed me for the first time. And don’t spend too much time revisiting your old favorites. This is about discovery.
Other provisions: Music couldn’t be too dark. I grew up loving Smith and Cure, but I didn’t want to be pulled down too much. Leonard Cohen, sorry, the excess of minor chords was too much for my fragile equilibrium. There is a pandemic you have to overcome!
Here are some other discoveries – and a song to start for each artist.
Nina Simone is everything
Of course, I’ve heard Nina Simone, but I’ve never really heard of it until it was blocked. Hear her.. I didn’t let her penetrate my bones. Invited her to the world of interiors where music works magically.
Wake up at the depth of the blockade – there are a lot of incidents, people are surprised on Twitter, and there’s a bad atmosphere in an almost empty city – everything changed on Nina Simone’s day. I challenge everyone to be in the negative mind of waking up to Feeling Good at a loud volume. I bounced off my bed and walked down the rain-soaked dark streets of King’s Cross. The soundtrack to Put a Spell on You suddenly looks romantic. Majestic.
Ray of Light is a great album
On my Madonna day, it took me a while to get to the product. Her early pop was fun and nostalgic, but it was like slipping off the surface. The latter Madonna was too overproduced to my liking. But what about the sweet spot? Ray of Light: The perfect balance of pop, dance and melody. Pitchfork explained it as follows: “Acid Electronica, Kabbalah, and Maternal Channeling”; I prefer to describe it as Madonna’s career Doritos. The perfect blend of sugar, fat and spices. You just have to consume everything and satisfy the delicious ones at once.
Mamas & Papas backstory is about as good as music
Their best song, California Dreaming, arrives in just 2 minutes and 25 seconds. Enjoying the sweet joy of these four-part sunny harmonies, I realized that the band was soon over. He was active for only a short period of time, from 1965 to 1968, and in 1971.
After eating the Mamas & Papas back catalog, I saw Laurel Canyon on Netflix and dug a rabbit hole in the internet about the band members and their big and chaotic 1960s life. (And no: Mama Cass did not suffocate with a London ham sandwich.)
Johnny Cash was my favorite day
When I called for nominations, it was emphasized that the number of (almost) men was high. Johnny Cash must be on the list. But when I woke up, the first song on his Spotify profile was Hurt. The blockage was just extended. It was raining. It was a kind of adorable day that lasted a week.
I sang together – “I focus on pain. That’s just the truth.” It tuned in for a pretty gloomy day.
Gorillaz lyrics are on another planet
I love Gorillaz, but this was the first time I heard the lyrics. “I’m a scary gargoyle on the tower / what you made with the power of plastic / your rhinestone eyes are like a distant factory”? Certainly OK! And is Feel Good Inc the only song that refers to windmills and butt cracks?
Pet Sounds is a pinnacle of some sort
Canon Reasons: This Beach Boys album is outside of time, space, trends, fashion and politics. Fans urged me to explore their entire back catalog, but I loved this album and couldn’t move on and spent the whole day (and the months that followed) iteratively.
Bridged list (in order of appearance)
Gil Scott Heron
Mamas & Papas
Simon and Garfunkel
The Rolling Stones
From Madonna to Nina Simone: The blockade taught me how to really listen to music | Music
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