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Friday, July 30, 2010

My iPod's Mood (iMood #1)


As a very occasional blogger, the idea that I might post regularly is still intimidating and foreign to my sense of normal.  But this morning I decided I would like to record a daily (not that I anticipate being disciplined enough to post daily, mind!) occurrence that continues to intrigue me.

I usually drive in to work with my iPod set to shuffle songs from its entire library.  I have an old 80GB (deck of cards size) iPod that holds most of my music collection (4853 songs, or so it tells me) and gets used primarily for the car, so it has a wide range of music from which to select.

What it does select and present to me is what I find so interesting. Not the first time I've felt like the iPod makes a darned good mechanical DJ.  Of course, since it gets to draw on music which, by and large, I have intentionally collected and stored on it, I suppose I have little room to be surprised by this.  Someone else listening to my iPod’s ramblings might not be at all impressed with it’s musical offerings.

This morning (top down, soft blue skies, pale moon high up and very visible, turning to fog as I got closer to the Edmonds waterfront) my iPod was in a particular musical mood, since everything it served up came from a similar genre vein:

  • Cake: When You Sleep (where do your fingers go?)
  • Train: Heavy
  • Ellie Lawson: Gotta Get Up From Here
  • Wilco: Kicking Television
  • Weezer: Why Bother
  • Camera Obscura: Lloyd, I'm Ready to be Heartbroken

A really good mix of tunes, a couple of which I haven't heard in quite some time. Thank you iPod.

So, purely to satisfy my own curiosity, I plan to track my iPod’s daily mood.  It’s a short commute, so the lists won’t be long.  This is now my first iMood post.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Lyrical Morning

Driving in to work this morning, cavas top firmly latched in the up position and wipers occasionally pushing aside the liquid sunshine which has so far defined this summer, my iPod's music selection seemed determine to intrigue me with music positioned to play with immediate circumstances.  Van Morrison came first, languidly growling and rolling downstream with his rendition of Shenandoah (one of my favorite renditions of a song I seem compelled to collect versions of).  This song, at least, seemed aligned with the wetness of this morning's drive.  

Dylan came next, wishing me the ability to be Forever Young. That is fair; I am not feeling particularly old these days (though I do get to spend time with the grandsons later this afternoon, which is a delightful exercise that makes me feel both very old and very young all at once). On the other hand, the iPod seemed to be pulling songs from an era far enough back to make me realize at least some passage of time.  It's hard to feel forever young when you realize the song you are listening to and know so well first appeared 36 years ago (!).

Then the Byrds piped in to observe they were "...I'm still sleepy and there ain't no place I'm going to." Double negative aside, they got that bit half right. I was still a bit sleepy driving in this morning, but I certainly had someplace I was going to.  Friday mornings seem particularly suited to the beckon of a piper's tune (or, in this case, rattling tambourine) and the promise of simply drifting off someplace unthought of and with no particular plan or intention. Maybe not the stuff to listen to as you drive in to work, but a good reminder not to focus exclusively on the planned and knowable.

Finally, The Guggenheim Grotto offered up Rosanna (no, not that Rosanna) and at least brought me up the to last couple of years in music history.  This song is just very good music; it offered no particular link or contrast to my day, so was a fitting song to roll into my parking place with (it's a short drive). I do like this band's music (their new CD is their best yet, and I think that's saying something!). So, as the lyrics in this song suggest, I think I will now, "...give those dogs a bone and put them down," head into the office, and tackle the stuff in my inbox that hasn't been properly dealt with so far this week.

Happy fourth to everyone, when it rolls around this weekend.  Don't blow off anything you might want to use later, enjoy the sunshine (some might be coming our way this weekend), and listen to the lyrics when you listen to the music (just don't listen beyond them).   

- Kevin