For a while there it seemed to me the most exciting thing I’d heard for a while was recorded in either 1982 or 1986 (take a bow, Mark E. Smith). That didn’t do much to stoke the fire that usually burns in me this time of year: the annual display of wankery that is the Year! End! List! I was, in a way that I’ve rarely been before, down on music. There were only a few stock pieces in the collection that I fell back on, mood pieces mostly, music for sleeping. Nothing new grabbed me.
Ah, but then Ron stepped in. I saw him on a recent trip to
THEN, STRANGE RUMBLINGS from Glenn Branca, of all people, opining that we’ve reached the End of Music; there’s nothing left to create! Maybe Branca’s out of ideas. Roses from dung: the piece served to awaken an anger in me (and others – check the comments) that someone would have the shortsighted nerve to declare such a thing. And it put my doldrums in perspective. It, along with the box of music Ron gifted, put me back on my course.
THE BOX was largely divided between three labels:
BUT THE POINT, really, is not that I was exposed to specific recordings, or discovered this artist or that label. The point is that, for the first time in a while, I was excited about music. And that brings us to now – December -- and to this blog’s reason for being. Heading into November of 2009, I wasn’t really looking forward to the annual exercise, something I’ve never felt before. Enter Ron, and The Box, and a revival of my enthusiasm.
Of the 20 or so CDs in that carton, only a couple will make it onto the list, but the wider point is that the gift, all that music, woke me up. So a debt is owed, Ron. Thank you.
SO, being as it is a bit late in the game, and that I find myself knee-deep in sawdust, paint, and IKEA kitchen components, this year’s exposition will be slightly truncated. Expect a lower word count, but all of the love. I’m thinking that the first, oh, ten or fifteen entries on the List will be devoid of explanation. I’ll save my verbiage for only the very top.
And to those of you who usually receive a CD: maybe January?