15 Consecutive Tracks From iTunes Shuffle (annotated and expanded). A Facebook meme, copied and pasted here for no good reason.
1. “A Day In The Life” – Handsome Boy Modeling School (White People) – I like this project, but I’m not super familiar with it. Great production. I just had to Google it to see who’s on the track (RZA, Mars Volta, AG). My favorite track on this album is Breakdown, which I only know because I starred it in iTunes. I’m not so good with song titles anymore.
2. “Nose Job” – Mad Magazine – A random 50s novelty song from Lux and Ivy’s Favorites Volume 6. It I don’t like it very much, as I am neither a fan of 50s pop or novelty songs. Why is in my iTunes, you ask? Indiscriminate downloading, that’s why.
3. “Love In A Void” – Siouxsie & The Banshees (Once Upon A Time: The Singles) – A couple of years ago, I bought this CD at a tag sale for less than a dollar with the sole intent of reselling it at Turn It Up. I ripped it in case I might like it. This is probably the first time I’ve heard it. Good thing I sold it.
4. “Is That Love” – Squeeze (Singles 45’s And Under) – Here’s a catchy fucking band. A bit too happy for my tastes, but solid, well-crafted songs. I’ve always sort of classified them in my head as XTC with nothing to say. But don’t ask me what XTC has to say… they just seem smarter.
5. “Long Hot Summer Night” – Jimi Hendrix (Electric Ladyland) – I love the old stereo separation. “Where are you when it’s a hot cold summer night” is even more meaningless than most of his other lyrics.
6. “Palmdale, USA” – Van Stone – “Funny heavy metal.” Like #2, except heavier.
7. Untitled Low MP3 from an unknown album – I have no idea where this came from. It sounds like… Low. Very listenable low-key stuff that I don’t pay too much attention to. First line: “When they found your body…” Something about sunflowers? It’s a good song.
8. “The Kingdom of Central Park” – John Hodgman – A 1-minute excerpt from the “The Areas Of My Expertise” audiobook. I have no idea what the man is talking about. I like funny audiobook excerpts popping up on shuffle. It’s better than sound effect samples.
9. “Shock Body” – Talib Kweli (Quality) – Nice horn samples. Good track off a great album (I have my own guidelines for what makes a great album: I have to get really really hooked by a minimum of four tracks. Quality qualifies: Rush, Get By, Guerrilla Monsoon Rap, Put It In The Air).
10. “The Song Remains The Same” Led Zeppelin (Houses Of The Holy) – I am not a life-long Zep fan. While I’ve of course heard them on the radio my entire life, I don’t think I started buying their albums til the last decade, so I am relatively unfamiliar with this album, this song. Hey, did you ever notice there are naked kids on the cover of this record? That’s a bit odd, innit.
11. “Come On Baby” – Jimmy Smith (Homecookin’) – It’s no “The Cat,” but it’s an okay track. Sort of a forgettable organ shuffle. It does feature one of my favorite photo-based album covers of all time. It looks like some magical food place I need to visit in a time machine.
12. “Go Slow” – Julie London – From a promo copy of the Ultra Lounge sampler that was covered with leopard skin fabric. A crappy song I don’t feel like listening to. One of a handful of discs that I’ve held onto purely for the packaging. (also: fake bamboo Ultra Lounge sampler, Sugar ‘File Under Easy Listening’, which is actually a rad album, but damn the CD is hard to fit on a shelf)
13. “King Of Pain” – The Police (Synchronicity, but this track is from the Complete box set) – A formative album of my youth. My dad randomly bought me the cassette. I don’t know if he ever liked the Police, or why he thought I would, because I don’t recall asking for it. Aside from being an incredibly complex and grown-up album, I remember being enthralled by the details of it. First cassette I’d ever owned with lyrics included (meaning, of course, that I studied them beginning to end. Comparing this to the way I treat mp3s and CDs now, I find it quite depressing, actually). The cassette itself had something like “Type-II Metal” or something written on it, which made it seem special and hi-fidelity. I remember “Murder By Numbers” was listed as not being available on the LP, which made me feel like I must own some precious special exclusive thing. Those poor fools with their turntables! If only they’d bought the CASSETTE! This song rocks. Synchronicity of COURSE qualifies as a Great Album, so Great in fact, that it is easier to list the songs I *don’t* think are great – Mother sort of annoys me, and Wrapped Around Your Finger I’ve heard enough in his lifetime.
14. Holy shit, did the fucking theme song from fucking Airwolf just come on my fucking iTunes? Yes, it sure as shit did. Jan Michael Vincent, you squint right through my soul.
15. Read Yellow – Read Yellow (Radios Burn Faster) – A not entirely original-sounding band that I liked for a bit. I am pretty unfamiliar with this track – I bought this CD mostly for the first two tracks “The Association” and “Model America” – which are pretty awesome. I like the singer. Good yeller. I think they were a UMASS band. Broke up in ’08.
16. “Pyramid Song” – Radiohead (Amnesiac) – Another huge band I ignored for a long time. I finally broke down and bought 3 or 4 of their albums at a Turn It Up sidewalk sale a couple of years ago, because they were scratched to hell and marked down. They’re a pretty okay band!
17. “Primary” – The Cure (Staring At The Sea Singles) – A great collection. That plus Disintegration is just about the perfect amount of Cure I need in my life.
18. “Satisfied Mind” – Lucinda Williams (Ramblin’) – My enjoyment of Lucinda Williams pretty much begins and ends with ‘Car Wheels On a Gravel Road’ (which qualifies as a Great Album for me, with Right On Time, Can’t Let Go, I Lost It, and Joy). This album I ripped because Sarah owns it, but I haven’t really listened to it much.
19. “9th and Hennepin” – Tom Waits (Rain Dogs) A moody thing that makes me want to skip back to ‘Jockey Full Of Bourbon’ or ‘Tango Til They’re Sore’ instead. While I indeed went through a big Tom Waits phase, even then I was less interested in stuff like this than his full-on songs. Though I of course appreciate it as being a big part of what makes albums like Rain Dogs awesome.
20. “Tales” – Wolfmother (Wolfmother) – Here’s a retro-rock-throwback-metal-something band that I really like. Incredibly well-produced album. I could easily delve into a boring ‘art vs. artifice’ type of conversation when it comes to bands & albums like this, but fuck it. They straight rock son.
I leave shuffle shuffling while I go back to fix typos and jot down a few more thoughts: Love Song (Cure), Jerusalem (Sleep), Ivory Marbles (B.B. Cunningham Jr), Dog Song (Nellie McKay), Pedestal (Portishead), Going Blind (Lonesome Brothers), four minutes of random Warner Brothers music & SFX (Carl Stalling).