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Monday, October 24, 2016

The Joy Of Re-Discovery

When was the last time you re-discovered a piece of music or song that had once knocked you out but then somehow slipped away? What brought it back to you - the radio, someone playing it in a live setting, a movie soundtrack?

Given the size of my collection of recordings, many songs are bound to slip away. Factor #2: I'm far more likely these days to listen to my I-pod or Pandora radio vs. spending time in front of my stereo, a habit that consumed countless hours in my past. Third: Most of my car time is now spent listening to lectures from the Great courses series. Net result? Great songs go dormant.

But without fail, each time I begin developing a music course - starting with constructing a playlist that purposefully avoids being a "greatest hits" regurgitation - old gems get unearthed. If you were observing me when this occurs, you might be tempted to recommend medication. I whoop, I cry, I go into a musical trance, all frequently in the space of moments. Then I upload whatever kicked my ass onto my I-pod.  

Having regular opportunities to re-discover music that has enriched my life may be the greatest benefit of doing these courses. My direct inspiration here was recently being re-floored by a stunning Paul Simon song called "Teacher" from his 2000 CD entitled "You're The One". Check it out - you won't be disappointed.    


  1. My record collection is not nearly as vast as yours I'm sure, but a few years ago I digitized the records using a pretty inexpensive turntable-to-digital thing, and put all of my music on my phone. I listen in the car and on headphones during plane trips and at night before falling asleep. That's not a novel idea of course, but it's been fun that shuffling among thousands of songs randomly reminds me of forgotten gems, or I can purposely listen to an album I haven't heard in forever. Once that was done ritually, for hours, in front of the "stereo". Now, like most everything else, it's mostly on the move or in shorter breaks. Good, and bad. To your point though, the rediscovery is really fun! The other day I listened to The Critter's Younger Girl album in full in it's proper sequence. That was no musical breakthrough album, but it's a good one and I remembered every harmony.

    1. Hey Jim; Been a while; thanks for the comment. I have one of those turntable to digital things too and have been meaning to do what you've done for quite some time. Unfortunately, procrastination mixed with a healthy does of obsession has gotten in my way. I think way too much about what I want to record vs. what I want to leave off from all my old LPS and as a result, nothing gets uploaded - yikes! The Critters, huh? I smell a whiff of musical hometown pride, there, no?

  2. I enjoyed your comment, Jim. Good luck to you, Pat, with your Paul Simon study. Will you be ending the course playlist with Insomniac's Lullaby?

  3. Pat, did you mean "healthy dose" ?

  4. Yep. I have to admit, I was a bit of a Critters groupie as a young kid. They used to occasionally show up at The Music Staff record store in Westfield, which was owned by the mom of one of them. I read recently that their lead singer passed away a couple weeks ago.