Friday, January 20, 2006

Yes, That's Right: I Like Gwen Stefani.

Zinger commented that I've covered movies, TV, and books well enough, but I have yet to talk about music; personally, I think it's just a ploy to give him an open forum to mock me for liking Gwen Stefani, but I'll play along.

Whenever someone asks me what type of music I listen to, I have a hard time coming up with a succinct answer; my tastes are pretty eclectic. It’s usually easier to describe what I don't listen to, but even then there are few things that I can categorically say I never listen to.

I tend not to buy instrumental CDs; the only fully instrumental CD I can think of that I own is the soundtrack for Requiem for a Dream featuring The Kronos Quartet. The Kill Bill soundtracks have quite a few instrumental tracks, and I enjoy most of them, but it's just not the sort of thing I'm generally going to spend my money on, although I will admit I've been tempted to pick up an Ennio Morricone CD a time or two, particularly Once Upon a Time in the West.

I'm also not likely to buy much in the way of Rap, my sole Rap CD being Midnight Marauders by A Tribe Called Quest; you can blame that purchase on my time rooming with Wrath teh Berzerkr.

My Country selection is a little bit bigger, but not much: Dixie Chicks (don't care about their politics, really like their music), Allison Krause and Union Station, and the O Brother Where Art Thou soundtrack. And then there's the borderline country stuff, like the excellent Kasey Chambers who I discovered thanks to her song "The Captain" being featured on an episode of The Sopranos; or, to be more accurate, I heard the song, really liked it, and by the time I asked fellow Sopranos viewer Rebel Monkey if she had noticed it, she had already tracked down Chambers and ordered her CD.

I've been introduced to quite a few obscure bands thanks to Rebel Monkey over the years, with most of them coming from music played on episodes of Buffy; Rebel Monkey and I even headed to SxSW one year to meet Virgil, one of the Buffy bands, but that's a story for another time; however, bringing it up does give me a chance to plug the new CD by Andrew Paul Woodworth, the lead singer of the (sadly)now defunct band who was very cool when we met him. My favorite track is "I Hate Music," but if you visit his site you should at least check out his cover of The Beastie Boys "Fight For Your Right to Party."

Speaking of SxSW, it was also responsible for introducing me to another great, yet now defunct, band, with the difficult-to-Google name of "pete." That period at the end of pete.'s name is actually part of pete.'s name; supposedly most of the members of pete. have formed a new band, but its output is theoretical at the moment. The magic of the sampler CD also got me hooked on Marc Copley and Sound of Urchin

Kind of chasing rabbits in this post, huh? Well, that's because I find myself stymied from an inability to talk about the merits of music with any degree of expertise. I can dissect a book or show, examining them for structure, genre, clarity, etc., but with music it's much more of a "gut" reaction. Yes, there are some artists I like because of their lyrics (Jason Mraz springs to mind), but there are so many others whose appeal comes from some other level; I mean, I love Bjork (Post is probably one of my top 10 albums) and Cibbo Matto, even though I have absolutely no idea what their songs are talking about half the time.

I'll probably think of more music stuff later, but right now Zinger is giving me the "You're killing me, Smalls!" treatment for my late posting, so I'll just finish with a "here are the top 10 singers/bands that I've felt compelled to listen to recently that weren't mentioned above" list, which probably won't do much more than give you an idea of the sort of mood I've been in recently:

  1. Gorillaz
  2. Barenaked Ladies
  3. Phantom Planet
  4. Guster
  5. Foo Fighters
  6. Franz Ferdinand
  7. Kings of Leon
  8. Thursday
  9. Rooney
  10. Lostprophets


Zinger said...

Well, I have to say that declaring a like for Gwe...that woman...right off the bat does strike quite a blow to your credibility. But then you come through with that list at the end...and totally redeem yourself!

Cap'n Cluck said...

I have no problems saying I like Gwen Stefani's music. She is a Pop singer. Pop coming from the word popular. This means a majority of people enjoy her music. Why is it people think listening to underground bands means you have a better taste in music? And after they push for these underground bands to gain more popularity in the mainstream, they back off and say now that they are popular they won't listen to them anymore. Cap'n Neurotic said, music is subjective. What one person may like, another may not. So, you can't really say that one type of music is "bad" or "good." So, you really can't judge a person's "musical coolness" if they like something you don't.

*steps down from my soapbox*

Just something that has been on my mind for quite awhile.

Have a Cluckity Cluck Cluck Day!