Thankfully, today’s post for the 365 Day Challenge is on a lighter note than recent writings. However important it is for me to write the heavier self-analysis posts, sometimes I just want to do something a little silly.
When it came to this prompt I was worried. My music collection is nowhere near as extensive as it used to be (at one time bordering on a quarter of a million tracks across 90ish genres!) These days it consists mostly of sentimental songs that I put on an MP3 player many years ago that I recently re-obtained courtesy of my parents and the postal system.
Hence, the majority of the ten that are about to be played will come with dozens of memories of better and happier times. Not a bad thing in itself, may even put a smile on my face!
So, let us begin!
Track 01: Right Out Of Your Hand (Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds; from the album Nocturama)
Before I met Louise I had absolutely no idea who Nick Cave was and my only knowledge of bad seeds was the paranoid fear I used to have of an apple tree growing out of my stomach should I accidentally swallow an apple pip.
After Louise played me the classic Into Your Arms I became an admirer then, with each successive trip through his back catalogue, a lover. By the time the album Nocturama was released I was a bone-fide fan.
Memories that come whenever I hear Nick Cave: Louise (obviously) given she introduced me to him in the first place and an old friend who was a huge fan of his work. Also, the handlebar mo I grew for Movember one year!
Track 02: Are You F*cking Kidding Me (Kate Miller-Heidke from the album Live at the Hi-Fi)
With the possible exception of My Friend the Chocolate Cake, Kate Miller-Heidke is my all-time favourite Australian singer/songwriter. My introduction to her came courtesy of the Port Fairy Folk Festival in 2006. I remember being completely blown away by vocal range and the sheer brilliance of her lyrics.
Memories that come whenever I hear Kate Miller-Heidke: sitting just behind her whilst watching Colin Hay play at the festival in 2006 and taking my parents to see her at the Spiegeltent in Melbourne later that same year.
Track 03: (You Drive Me) Crazy (Britney Spears; from the album …Baby One More Time)
Told you…eclectic! Even though I should be ashamed to admit it, I’m a huge Britney fan. Her music makes me smile, and brings back all sorts of memories of drunken evenings in the late 1990s. Plus, I always want to dance (badly) when I hear some of her tracks.
Memories that come whenever I hear Britney Spears: stripping in the cage of a nightclub during a wild drunken evening, stripping in a pub during a different wild drunken evening and the endless teasing from people with musical tastes much better than my own whenever I tried to defend her music.
Track 04: A Girl Who’s No One Else (Emma Tonkin; from the album The Anchor and the Alabatross)
An album I purchased many years ago for one reason and one reason only; that I knew the singer. She was a friend of Louise who I barely knew but out of some random sense of support purchased the album. Without wanting to sound biased, it has been a particular favourite of mine for coming on five years now. Proven by the fact I have held onto it despite years of nothing.
Memories that come whenever I hear Emma Tonkin: sitting in the middle of the Ness Islands listening to this album on an MP3 player reminiscing, a brief Alexander Technique lesson Emma gave me once when her client didn’t appear and Louise.
Track 05: Love You All (Cloud Cult; from the album Feel Good Ghosts (Tea Partying Through Tornados)
This just reminds me of sleeping in the Kings Domain wishing every minute that I were dead. I used to spend my days in the Melbourne City Library sifting through their CD collection picking up random albums and listening to them during my one hour a day internet session.
Most were uninspiring garbage that didn’t resonate with me in any way shape or form but this album got to me, big time, and in the years since has become not only an anthem for that period of my life but also an album that, even though it was lost long ago, shone a tiny beacon of hope into my soul.
Memories that come whenever I hear Cloud Cult: losing hope whilst homeless.
Track 06: 3 Sheeps to the Wind, Part I (Martyn Bennett; from his self-titled album)
Martyn Bennett is one of the great Scottish musicians of all time. A truly gifted soul who tragically lost his life to cancer in 2005 . A true one of a kind, and a man I greatly admire in so many ways.
Memories that come whenever I hear Martyn Bennett: travelling around Scotland in February 2008, sitting in an alley off Little Bourke Street after being so blown away by one of his tracks I had to sit down.
Track 07: Harvard Blues (Count Basie; from the album Basie Blues)
I became aware of Count Basie whilst concocting a play list for my then friend/future abuser’s 21st birthday party. Over the course of several days she threw nearly 10,000 tracks of music in my direction and expected me to whittle it down to a three hours playlist. Part of this included transferring nearly thirty CDs onto my computer that she’d borrowed from a friend, several of which were Count Basie.
I worked on that playlist from 7pm until 5am, and then woke myself at 6am to continue working on it until 11am, all because I wanted this person to have as wonderful a 21st as people had given me.
Memories that come whenever I hear Count Basie: spending those fifteen odd hours trying to make a cohesive playlist that went from 20s era jazz to naughties top 40 classics and the old friend whose CDs introduced me to such wonderful, beautiful music.
Track 08: Chelsea Dagger (The Fratellis’ from the album Costello Music)
Following two weeks in Scotland in 2008 I flew from Glasgow to Gatwick to spend a long weekend with my brother and future sister in law. On the Friday evening they whacked on Singstar, cracked open the alcohol…and forced me to sing. This was the song my brother and I nailed with absolute perfection. Or at least that’s how I remember it.
Memories that come whenever I hear The Fratellis: that Singstar session!
Track 09: Diva’s Lament (from the musical Spamalot)
There are no words to describe how much I love this song. In fact I love it so much I’m tempted to undergo a sex change, learn how to sing, spend months working out so I’m a sizzling hot piece of ass, trawl through an audition process and overcome my anxiety – all so I can sing this song in front of a full theatre audience.
Track 10: Naked (Louise; from the album Naked)
This was the first single I ever purchased, much to the chagrin of my music loving father. Whenever I’m asked the question ‘what was the first single you ever purchased?’ I tend not to answer. Unfortunately, the follow up question is usually ‘ok, what was the first album you ever purchased?’
Look…she was hot, I was a hormonal teenager, the album was called Naked…I’m allowed to have one moment where I bow to malicious corporate marketing ploys aren’t I?
Memories that come whenever I hear Louise: you really – really – don’t want to know! :p