Who Am I?

My photo
A nobody; a nitwit; a pilot; a motorcyclist; a raconteur; a lover...of life - who loves to laugh, who tries to not take myself (or anything) too seriously...just a normal guy who knows his place in the universe by being in touch with my spiritual side. What more is there?

11 July 2007

Why I Love My iPod (Yet again...)

I was in Guanaja, sitting at Graham's as usual. As also usual I was the only customer in the place, which is at the same time both kind of nice and kind of strange. Needless to say, I never have to wait in line to get a drink refill, as I did just last weekend when Matt, Alisha and I went to see a hugely popular cover-band at Seville Quarter.

At Graham's, Alex, one of the bartenders went over and stuck a CD in the player. Suddenly I heard a bunch of familiar songs from the 1980's. I waved him over. "Alex," says I, "can't you find something else other than this crap?"

He looked puzzled. "I...I thought you liked this kind of music?"

"Yes, yes I do," I told him. "I like old music. But if we keep listening to old music, there will never be any new old music," I said.

At this point, Alex gave me a blank look and went, "...Que?" If you've ever seen the old British t.v. series "Fawlty Towers" with Manuel-the-Spanish-waiter you'll know exactly how that went.

For a hilarious little one-minute excerpt of the show, click below. Classic British humor. In this episode, a pushy, hard-of-hearing woman has arrived to check-in. She was trying to jump the line but Polly, who was already handling a customer, was having none of it.

I had to laugh at Alex's' reaction. "Look," I explained. "I love these songs. The bring back memories for me...good memories. But this here," I said, sweeping my arm to encompass all of Guanaja, "these are new experiences. I want to listen to new music to remember them by. That way, I'll always have new old music to listen to."

A look of happy comprehension crossed Alex's face. "Ahh, new old music!" he said, smiling. Then, chuckling at the concept, he scurried off and put some Reggaeton in the CD player. Now for me, Reggaeton is one (small) step above hard-core rap on the Bob Like-O-Meter, but at least it was new.

Flash back twenty-two years or so to 1985: I was living on Long Island, New York. I was single, flying helicopters for a living, riding motorcycles like a madman for fun, and generally having the time of my life. (Okay, things haven't changed much. Life is carefree and fun when you don't have to grow up.) There was some great music out, and a radio station that played nothing but new/alternative/"new wave" music; I've written before about WLIR 92.3.

One of the songs they played, "Summer Love" was from a relatively obscure Scottish band called APB.You've never heard of either, I'm certain. Catchy tune, great harmonies, good lyrics, guitar-driven, great bass line, good dance song...like many of my favorites it should have been a bigger hit than it was.

Summer love
I can't believe this place is real
It's been around since the beginning of life

August evening,
Down to drive back to the city
The orange sun is slowly falling
And your sleepy head is resting on my arm...

It came out in the summer and perfectly captured that special feeling. Who doesn't love summer?

Anyway, you know the drill - I get these songs stuck in remote corners of my brain where they periodically peek their head out and drive me crazy until I search them out and buy them. I had googled APB with no success in the past. But iTunes came to the rescue! Sure enough, APB is in their library and it's now in the iPod.

I worry sometimes that my iPod is getting too oldies-heavy. Because it is. I do have a lot of old songs. But I also try to keep up with what's new. The trouble is, finding new music is tough. Satellite radio is a good place, but I've also picked up new bands from movies and even YouTube vlogs (video blogs). Thus, alongside Elvis, Ricky Nelson and Johnny Cash, the Beau Brummels, ELO and Dylan, I have bands like Blackfield, Widespread Panic, The Village Green, Muse, Gomez, and my current favorites, The Killers. If you're over thirty you may not have heard of any of them.

A friend was looking through my iPod library on my computer. I mentioned that I have 129 songs so far - about half of its capacity. "That means you've spent $129 on music!" he said, aghast. Well...I guess so. I hadn't really thought of it that way. Which is, I suppose, what Apple intended. But no matter! I'm still listening to music, and that's what counts.

No comments: