Saturday, August 1, 2015

Bob's Playlist #1, July 6 , 2015

1. Devo, "Through Being Cool"

2. John Lee Hooker, "Boogie Chillun'" [this is the song that awoke my interest in the Blues and his first big hit.]

3. Johnny Cash, "Busted" [from "At Folsom Prison"]

4. Tampa Red, "Boogie Woogie Dance"

5. Oscar Isaac, "Fare Thee Well (Dink's Song)" [from the soundtrack to "Inside Llewyn Davis". There are two versions of this song on the soundtrack: one sung by Oscar Isaac & Marcus Mumford and one featuring only Oscar Isaac. I recommend the one sung by Oscar Isaac without Marcus Mumford.]

5. The Devil Makes Three, "For Good Again" or "This Life" [I couldn't make up my mind, I like their sound and their lyrics in particular.]

6. Odetta, "Midnight Special"

7. Big Bill Broonzy, "Joe Turner No. 2 (Blues of 1890)"

8. Warren Zevon, "Mr. Bad Example"

9. Sacred Shakers, "Titanic"

10. Elizabeth Cotten, "Holy Ghost, Unchain My Name"

* * *

About these playlist

Every Monday, starting in July, I make up a playlist for a friend at the local library. It occurred to me this past weekend that other people might be interested. The primary criterion for inclusion in a given week’s playlist to be as different as possible from other entries and if not, then as different as possible from entries in previous playlists.

Because these playlists are eclectic, they can be a means to discover new (to the reader) artists and to serve as an entry point to new (to the reader) music genres. Occasionally an entry may be repeated. I rely on memory to avoid repetitions. Take it for what it is, an accident.

My music reservoir is the local library and the regional network of libraries to which it belongs. I assume entries are available on YouTube. I do not link provide links to YouTube because I assume that readers are capable of opening a new tab in their browser, finding YouTube’s homepage, and copying & pasting artist and title into YouTube’s search box.

Selections are drawn from my listening experience and from reviews. I only include songs that I have listened to and that have some magic something. I don’t expect anyone to like every entry in a given playlist. There is no theme to these playlists. They are tracks that I think everyone should listen to at least once. They range from pop to rock to prewar blues to ethnic music to genres found in other countries to gospel to country and beyond. I rarely recommend albums. Playlist entries should be thought of as a place to start exploring a performer or genre. Good music is good music. It does not depend on genre, gender, age, technology, instrumentation, technique, ethnicity, geography or climate. Like Justice Brennan famously said of pornography, “I know it when I see it.” Sometimes its love at first listen, sometimes it’s 10 or 12 listens or more.

Sometimes I include a comment. Many times I do not. Some times I opinionate at length at the end of a playlist. Sometimes I do not. Playlist plus comments rarely run longer than 2 typed pages. Comments may be safely ignored but feedback is appreciated.

I don’t expect agreement or praise. If you want to share your own recommendations and discoveries, then please do so. Comments that include pointers to new (to me) music and artists are infinitely more likely to get a reply. I will shamelessly delete and ban posts and commenters who make offensive or rude comments. Moderation is not about fairness, it is about creating a climate in which a community might flourish. If you can’t disagree and be civil then there’s something wrong with you, a deficiency of personality and character. If there is a rule in moderation that I follow, it is “Don’t be a dick.”

As for the other posts that are not playlists, they can be safely ignored. They’re mostly opinions and reflections on Christianity with occasional reports about my most recent and very long severe depressive episode. Lately I’ve developed an interest in the intersection of Protestantism, whiteness and systemic racism. If you are religious, you would do well to avoid my non-music posts. If, however, curiosity gets the better of you, I would take it as a kindness if you would articulate your objections in a comment. I will give them careful consideration.

That all said, I will post a playlist a day until I am caught up, then playlists will be posted on Mondays.

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