Wednesday, June 13, 2012

month of lauren // 13

Now listening to: Morphine, The Night

I mentioned yesterday that watching High Fidelity awoke deep within my sleeping love of music. For as long as I can remember, I have loved music. One of the things I'm most grateful for in my upbringing is that there was always music in our home. My parents have always had seriously impressive music taste and made a point of passing that along to my brother and me. 

Routine car rides turned into marathons of listening to WCBSfm and learning the likes of The Guess Who and Creedence Clearwater Revival. Saturday mornings started off with Louis Prima, Frank Sinatra, Bobby Darin, Tina Turner, Pink Floyd. Being home was a dance party at any given time, and lyrics and melodies were written onto my mind from a young age. I discovered The Beatles, Hanson, and The Monkees with my cousin Chrissy during elementary school, and then moved into obnoxious middle school pop music for a while until I finally fell in love with Metallica when a girl friend brought me S&M as a present for my 13th birthday. High school was all about rock and metal and anything I could dance to. Boyfriends and friends made me mix CDs I still have, introducing me to music I never otherwise would have known. Older friends made sure I listened to the likes of Joydrop, Massive Attack, Tricky, and Poe. My parents continued making sure that I listened to classics as much as the newer stuff, and then my college boyfriends and friends brought me into Neil Young, Okean Elzy, Mike Patton, Goldfrapp, and Carbon Leaf. 

Every time I moved or met someone new, more amazing music would become part of my life, and when I would occasionally break a laptop or an iPod, or leave a boyfriend, or get dumped, or foul a friendship, I would lose pieces of that music; sometimes it was just a song, sometimes an entire album, sometimes even worse I would voluntarily let go of the music I love to get by more easily on the day-to-day with someone.

The latter reason had happened in my life recently. It manifested itself so quietly that I hardly even realized it at all until deeper things like "This music is embarrassing" were said out loud, or looks given, or eyes rolled, or playlists became full of songs I didn't know or like. I hadn't realized it fully until I watched High Fidelity and remembered all the reasons I love music: 

The way a deep voice can stir something up. The guitar riff that plucks at my heartstrings. The chords that bring back a smell, a breeze, the fabric of the back seat of an Oldsmobile. The care that goes into crafting a mix. The lists, the playlists, the preferences, the sharing. The bonds that are forged from listening to the same band. The skin-shaking reverberation at concerts. The true coming-of-age.

Today I made the conscious decision to get back into music, my music, the music I love, for the reasons I love. I immediately started doing two things.

I built a High Fidelity playlist in Spotify. Yes, there was already one out there but it had a number of inaccurate versions of songs and I'm way too OCD for that. I used various lists from the web and was able to find 61 of the 80 songs played and/or referenced in the film. I'm going to listen to it piece by piece frequently, and explore the musicians' other work as well. (You can check it out here if you want.)

I also asked friends for recommendations, and boy did they deliver. I had almost forgotten the bonding nature of music! Thanks to friends, I discovered new musicians, new albums, and music I hadn't listened to in years.

Here's a sampling of the songs/albums I've been listening to in my quest to re-love music:

If you couldn't tell, I'm loving this. 

Do you have any recommendations for music that I should definitely check out? If so, please please share in the comments and I will love you (even more than I do already) (and forever).


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