An Ever-Expanding Universe

Music is very, very important to me.

In my life thus far, there have been several instances where my musical tastes have broadened, hit a plateau, then broadened again.

By plateau, I mean that I was enjoying music still, but I wouldn’t be listening to any unfamiliar music. Maybe I would come to the rather silly conclusion that there was nothing more out there, no more music that I could find to like, or no music that was worth the effort in searching out.

The last plateau happened when our eldest kids were born back in January of 2003.

This was a little different kinda plateau. It was more like all the sudden I had kids. I couldn’t necessarily play just any of the music I wanted. I couldn’t play Song X because its dissonance would make one of the kids cry, or couldn’t play Song Y because it had the word “motherfudger” in it — stuff like that.

Don’t get me wrong, I have played and still play a helluva lot of good music for the kids, but there *was* a limit to what I could play.

As I think about it, just the sheer upheaval that having children causes is probably the core reason why my musical tastes were put on pause. Yes, that last sentence rhymed. No, it wasn’t intentional.

So, my tastes languished a bit, until I started getting into music online. I feel that my exposure to unfamiliar music has grown exponentially with the use of the computer, and the use of a portable MP3 player.

In this post, I thought it would fun to share some of the songs I have only recently been exposed to with you, gentle reader.

Many of these songs are not new. You might know them, you might like them already, you might enjoy them if you give a listen. That’s the music player, over on the right. Pipe up and say something, dammit. Let’s talk about music, alright?

Long live music. Without further ado, here are some songs from my most recent taste-broadening. The links are just to the bands’ respective Wikipedia entries — the song “jukebox” is on the upper-right of the blog.

The Raincoats – Fairytale In The Supermarket
— from The Raincoats (1979)
Wow, this song is so damned snotty. I love it.

Boubacar Traoré – Duna Ma Yelema
— from Macire (2000)
It’s not in English. I have no idea what he’s talking about. It’s still incredibly powerful, even without knowing the words. Amazing guitar-playing, an amazing voice. It is the musical equivalent of melancholy, I think.

The Clean – Twist Top
— from Unknown Country (1996)
If I could be in any band, I’d be in The Clean. A pop band, but a pop band with great sensibilities, inventive musical playing, and the undeniable power of THE HOOK. “Three million people can be wrong, three million people can be wrong.”

Pugh Rogefeldt – Colinda
— from Ja dä ä dä (1969)
You won’t find this guy on the English version of Wikipedia. You haveta go on the Swedish one. This is such a pretty song, with a nice dissonant freakout at the end. Finding this artist was the equivalent of running into a movie theater to get out of the rain, only to discover a foreign film that affects you on a deeply personal level. And no, the foreign film isn’t dubbed in English, and it doesn’t have subtitles.

Can – Moonshake
— from Future Days (1973)
I had listened to German experimental bands like Faust and Neu!, but for some reason never gave these guys a try. Which was a mistake. Moonshake is a shorter, poppy song of theirs, but it’s all good, people. It’s all good.

We Look Like Girls – whap
Well, what the hell, I might as well as put a song recently done by Tim and myself, right? Tim and I have about ten or songs in progress, which are actually nothing like this one. But I like it, and I hope you do, too. No warbly vocals from either Tim or myself in this one! w00t, as the kids say.

Hello, Russia! I Have An Automobile Of Gold!

Check out the map of this site’s visitors at the bottom.

What the? Do people in Russia not *care* about my random thoughts? Or is it that they are unaware of them?

Perhaps a greeting to them in their native language, courtesy of Altavista’s Babel Fish translator is required to get me on the map there, literally.

Hello! Rainbows are pretty! I have a gold car. You are my friend, and will increase my hit counter. Thank you.

1st English-to-Russian Translation
Здравствулте!! Радуги милы! Я имею автомобиль золота. Вы будете моим другом, и увеличите мой счетчика ударов. Вы.

Translating the Russian back to English
To zdravstvulte!! Rainbows are dear! I have an automobile of gold. You will be my friend, and you will increase my of the counter of impacts. You.

Back to Russian
К zdravstvulte!! Радуги дорог! Я имею автомобиль золота. Вы будете моим другом, и вы увеличите мое счетчика ударов. Вы.

Back To English
To zdravstvulte!! Rainbows of roads! I have an automobile of gold. You will be my friend, and you will increase my of the counter of impacts. You.

Message In A Washer

The Police were my favorite band back in 7th and 8th grade.

On a nightly basis, I would sing along with the songs on Outlandos d’Amour, Reggatta De Blanc, Zenyatta Mondatta, etc. During my 7th grade year, they played in the Assembly Hall at the University of Illinois as part of their Synchronicity tour, about 80 miles east of my hometown of Springfield.

I sooooooooooo wanted to go, but I was not allowed. My brother *did* end up going, and brought me back a shirt.

It was nice, but you can imagine how it wasn’t quite the same as being there.

Earlier this year, there were rumblings that The Police were reuniting for a tour, and were going to roll into Chicago at some point in the summer, playing the best ballpark in the world, Wrigley Field.

As you are probably already aware, sure enough, the rumors were true.

I didn’t get around to purchasing tickets for the show, and figured they were sold out.

But yesterday, a coworker came up to me and said, “Hey, do you need tickets for The Police?”

“F*ck you!” I enthusiastically replied. “Are you serious?”

He was serious. He had four tickets he was willing to sell to me for four hundred and fifty bucks. Now