|My # One rock-and-roll LP|
Back the Truck Up
That I have changed is no more evident than in the music I listen to-or don’t listen to-as the case happens to be. Challenged recently to come up with a dozen albums which have impacted me during my lifetime, I found that even though this music has faded from the forefront of my mind, it was still a challenge to sort through and choose twelve.
The artists and music I selected, all from the sixties and seventies, had a huge impact on me; after all, that was the assignment. Having an effect is one thing-maintaining that impactful feeling is quite another matter.
It’s as though, having once had the sledge hammer effect, I have now downgraded these musical memories, and placed them in some sort of storage unit in my brain, where they now wield the impact of a rubber mallet.
That doesn’t mean I am not as pleased as popcorn to hear an old favorite pop up within hearing distance-not at all. What it means is I no longer have any raging desire to seek this music out, for an “oldies, but goodies” session.
|Big Brother-"Cheap Thrills"|
None interest, whatsoever.
Not long ago when my sibs and I gathered up here on the mountain, there was great fanfare when an old family favorite, a pristine (newly opened) vinyl copy of Simon and Garfunkel’s “Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme,” was put on the turntable.
It’s not that I was put off-not at all. But I was also not feeling the general air of nostalgia to the same degree that everyone else was. I cannot back the proverbial truck up that far-there appears to be something wrong with my reverse gear.
When I emerged from Panic Attack Syndrome in 2010, I was drawn to contemporary pop music, the kind you hear on Ukiah’s K-WNE. Though incongruous, in terms of age appropriateness, I do think it commensurate with someone who was reliving his adolescence, at least in terms of emotional awareness and musical appreciation.
|I listened to this album for four hours-nonstop-once.|
I went from contemporary pop to reggae shortly thereafter, and have since broadened my horizons to include what some might refer to as techno. To me it’s just music, but employs a more synthetic approach, if that term applies.
Again, there is room in my head for vast, unlimited amounts of music, but there is a waiting line to the music I hold dear to my heart. My heart encompasses only so much at a time and the rest gets squeezed out.
I don’t write the rules-I just try to follow them.
I’d list some of the names of the contemporary artists I listen to, but that isn’t the reason for this post. I am not extolling you to examine your own musical interests; I am only explaining that I seem different from many others my age, who are content to listen to classic rock, and let it go at that.
Or country, classic, jazz, reggae, hip-hop, oldies but goodies, and whatever else they may want to enjoy. Graybeards are not usually attracted to Vampire Weekend and Walter Meego, not to mention Coleman Hell or Modest Mouse, which might make me different than most.
Now there’s a real shocker.
Annie and I have several hundred long-play, vinyl records within our combined collection, to which we have no access, lacking a turntable. Obviously, if it were a priority, we would have acquired said turntable, so it merely adds to my observation that I have left the past behind, when it comes to music.
|"Bring tea for the Tillerman, steak for the sun, |
wine for the women who made the rain come..."
Now, if I could only apply that same logic to my clothes closet, I’d be in business.
* * *
I decided a Top-Forty was better than a dozen. So here, Davy, is an annotated list of impactful albums from the 60’s and 70’s. As I am sure you can, I identify with a lot of music associated with my time in the service.
Jefferson Airplane-Surrealistic Pillow (My first realization that drugs might just be, well, you know, interesting?)
The Doors-The Doors (I saw Jim Morrison in the summer of 1968 @ The Hollywood Bowl)
Big Brother and the Holding Company (Janis Joplin) Cheap Thrills (I took this album to school one day as a freshman in high school-instant Great Success!)
Quicksilver Messenger Service-Quicksilver Messenger Service (I actually found this album at Sunrize (sic) Market, where I was a box-boy at the time)
Beatles-Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (I reveled in this album all through the summer of 1967, as I single-handedly painted our house on Fellowship: one coat of white primer and two coats of fire engine red)
Crosby, Stills, Nash-Crosby, Stills and Nash (I listened to “Suite Judy Blue Eyes” over and over once for four solid hours, trying to deal with a bruised heart)
The Who-Who’s Next (For decades I have listed this as my personal, Number-One favorite album of all-time. While in the army? "Won't Get Fooled Again" (!) )
Santana-Santana (Blistered my soul with its passion)
Cat Stevens-Tea for the Tillerman (I saw “Harold and Maude” while stationed @ Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, in 1972, which featured this album. It remains an experience seared into my psyche; cosmically, I needed that film at that moment)
Led Zeppelin-Led Zeppelin (White-hot blues that I will always connect with my friends John and Glen, and a ’64 Ford Econoline van)
Simon and Garfunkel-Bridge Over Troubled Waters (I had loved this duo earlier, and for them to follow up with this blockbuster, unreal...)
Cream-Disraeli Gears ("Sunshine of my Love"-part of my summer of self-awareness)
Moody Blues-Tuesday Afternoon (The crossover of classic music and orchestra into rock and roll was breathtaking to me. I loved all Moody Blues music.)
Beatles-Abbey Road (Wine and weed up in the San Gabriel Mountains, my senior year in high school…)
Boston-Boston (Not just me-my entire circle of friends embraced this artist)
Jackson Browne-Running on Empty (I saw JB at the San Jose Performing Arts Center, one of four times I would see him perform)
The Cars-The Cars (So original, this album was part of my college circle at San Jose State)
Bruce Springston-Born to Run (Came out minutes after I got out of the army and was the official start of the “second half of my life”)
Steely Dan-Aja (When Annie and I used to visit bro Matt at his cabin, this album always seems to be on...,)
Supertramp-Breakfast in America (Annie loved this album and turned me onto it. Our musical interests were quite similar until more recent times)
Credence Clearwater Revival-Credence Clearwater Revival (Suzy Q was the headliner, but it was “I Put a Spell on You” that made a lasting impression on me)
Dire Straits-Sultans of Swing (Another college buddy)
Amazing Rhythm Aces-Too Stuffed to Jump (This album represented a strange period of my life, when my first marriage had dissolved and I was dealing with the aftermath)
Deep Purple-MachineHead (Military Madness time-I was in Korea when this came out)
Blondie-The Best of Blondie (One of the most original albums ever)
Joni Mitchell-Miles of Aisles (Another release just after I got out of the Machine, associated with my new-found freedom)
Bob Dylan-Blood on the Tracks (That the King of folk/rock was back-too incredible for words)
James Taylor-Sweet Baby James (Forever associated with my bro, Noel)
Electric Light Orchestra-Eldorado (I used to sit on the roof of my apartment on San Fernando St. in San Jose, smoke a little cannabis, and see Buddha when I listened to this album)
Elton John-Yellow Brick Road (Pure magic, all of it, but “Funeral for a Friend” and “Norma Jean” elevate this LP to Hall of Fame material)
Carole King-Tapestry (Another album connected to my friend John, and a double date we went on together to see Carole King, at the Hollywood Bowl, following dinner at an up-scale, swank restaurant in SoCal)
America-Horse with No Name (I received this cassette while in Korea, just after starting a 24-hour duty-by myself-on a Saturday, and it helped me immensely)
Black Sabbath-Paranoid (This album represented the period just before I went into the service)
Pink Floyd-Dark Side of the Moon (Mysterious and elegant, I was intrigued by “Dark Side”)
Paul McCartney and Wings-Band on the Run (As disappointed as I was when the Beatles broke up, this album gave me huge assurance that we were in for the Beatles times 4)
Starship-Red Octopus (Instant cult success in my circle of United Auto friends)
Jethro Tull-Benefit (So much depth, and the shows Ian Anderson used to put on! We saw him four times over the years)
Allman Brothers-Eat A Peach (Korea-hootch material)
Beach Boys-California Saga (Profoundly boosted my emotional state of mind when I got this album while overseas in Korea)
The italicized titles are the twelve songs I originally listed on my post on f/b as my personal favorites which made an impact on me.