Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Shuffling at 37,000 feet

One doesn't always know if one has a captive audience, but today you have a captive writer. I'm flying to New York this morning for work, so I thought I'd hit "shuffle" on the iPad and see what came up, adding commentary here and there.

For those of you who read my Twitter account (here), you might have noticed that I sometimes post songs I "discovered" using Shazam or Soundhound. That's been my way of sharing with you and saying "Hey, here's a song I like that I'm listening to. Maybe you'll like it". Think of today's post as more of a riff on that. Let's dive in and chat about the first ten songs that come through...

"Just a City" - Voice of the Beehive
This is a band I stumbled upon in high school. Real catchy pop, and as an added bonus, their drummer was Madness' drummer! (for my American readers, Madness was more than a one hit wonder. In fact "Our House" isn't indicative of their work).

"Heaven" - Talking Heads
The Talking Heads are one of those bands I go through waves with. I'm a huge fan of their pre-True Stories work and was never able to get into solo David Byrne. I miss what they brought to the game.

"Future Days" - Thompson Twins
In the 80s, I was a huge Thompson Twins fan. Couldn't get enough of them. Then the 90s came along and I joined the group of people who could. File this song under "didn't age well".

"Song for a Future Generation" - B52s
This song was my first exposure to the B52s via MTV. I had a good friend in high school who was a big fan of theirs. They do what they do very well and no other band comes close to it.

"Street Fighting Man" - Rolling Stones
The Stones have been around so long, to comment on them it feels like I could comment on one of three different bands: The British Invasion version of The Stones where they were in neck and neck competition with The Beatles; the 70s rock gods that put out amazing tracks like Street Fighting Man; and the third version, the one I'm most familiar with...the band that tours every couple of years in support of albums that are usually forgettable with the possible collection of one track per album. Sadly, this last version the the band is the one we've had around the longest.

"All That You Dream" - Linda Ronstadt
This is from Linda's late 70s "Living in the USA" album. Also known as the first album I remember hearing on 8-track. My dad's car at the time had an 8-track player in it... a big mid-70s brown Pontiac Catalina. I'm sure it wasn't as big as I remember, but I'm guessing you could still fit a full grown cow in it...and why the hell was everything brown in the 70s??? Did all of America develop a UPS fetish to go along with their key parties and medallions?

"All Good" - Zeroleen from Weeds
If you find yourself wanting to buy new music and don't know what to buy, you can never go wrong with a soundtrack from the TV show Weeds. Whoever chooses their music does an amazing job picking catchy eclectic songs that stick in your head in a good way. This is one of those.

"Unstoppable" - Santogold
The more I listen, the more I like Santogold, although I often can't tell the difference between her and the lead singer of MNDR. Speaking of Santogold,nhave you ever seen the late 80s Santo Gold informercial? If you haven't, click below for a's a train wreck.

"Melissa" - Matthew Sweet and Susanna Hoffs
Now, I'm usually fan of cover songs...good and bad, but this thing is terrible. I'm deleting it as soon as I sync my iPad with my laptop. Absolutely turgid...and I usually like the cover albums these two collaborate on...they sound good together. Just not here.

"Separared by the Sea" - Findlay Brown
Yak! This is worse than Melissa! I have no idea why I have this or how it got in my music collection (I tend to blame free compilation CDs from magazines and iTunes' singles of the week). Delete!

Since i don't want to end on a low note, let me recommend something for you. Last night I saw the movie "The Other Guys". It was much better than I expected and more importantly, the music was fantastic. A good mix of funk, pop, rock and rap...and an oldie I had forgotten about: Donovan's "Season of the Witch"

Back to the flight...

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