“Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent” – Victor Hugo
“One ought, every day at least, to hear a little song, read a good poem, see a fine picture, and, if it were possible, to speak a few reasonable words.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
“If I should ever die, God forbid, let this be my epitaph:
THE ONLY PROOF HE NEEDED FOR THE EXISTENCE OF GOD
WAS MUSIC” – Kurt Vonnegut
This year’s reading list will focus on music. My deepest personal interest is in rock, as examples of my writing show again and again, but I like almost every genre of music – I have a deep, abiding love for classical, a gift from my grandmother, and I listen to lots of R&B, soul, and funk. I went through a period where I listened almost exclusively to jazz. I did the same thing with folk. And with blues. And with pop from the period characterized by composers and performers of what are commonly known as American standards (composers like Cole Porter,Irving Berlin, George Gershwin, performers like Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Rosemary Clooney, Doris Day). I would like to say I have a deep, abiding love for country music, and I do find some of it powerful and moving, especially in its old school forms as practiced by old school artists such as Hank Williams (Sr.) and his successors such as Johnny Cash and Merle Haggard. But I’d be lying if I said it reaches me the way other genres do. Old fogy that I am, I have never really embraced hip hop, though again certain old school artists impressed me such as Chuck D, Ice T, and Kool Moe Dee. (I suppose this means I represent for east side).
Anyway, to the reading… Continue reading