Listening: Crosby, Stills and Nash

Red asked me to play some music, and I told her this album came from a box that I got for free from a new friend who was trying to get rid of her vinyl. (Of course, 25 years later she not only did not get rid of her vinyl but gained several dozen boxesContinue reading “Listening: Crosby, Stills and Nash”

W.B.’s Book Report: Woody Guthrie, A Life

Woody Guthrie: A Life was delivered on June 12, and I finished it four months later, on the morning of Oct. 14. It’s the longest print book I’ve finished reading in many years; if you remember me talking about a book longer than 500 pages, well, I had a talented narrator reading it to meContinue reading “W.B.’s Book Report: Woody Guthrie, A Life”

Listening: Arpan

I wish I could find a shareable video of the performance of Ravi Shankar’s “Arpan” from the Concert for George DVD. All there seems to be online is the audio with a static photograph of the DVD cover.  That is enough to convey the power of the music. But it is even more powerful toContinue reading “Listening: Arpan”

Here’s to the Long Shots

When I was in eighth grade, I was obsessed with Top 40 radio. I followed the record charts like sports fans follow the standings, picking my favorite teams and seeing how they fared in the competition to have the most popular song. I listened to the weekly countdown shows and wrote down the surveys ofContinue reading “Here’s to the Long Shots”

Any way the wind blows

I have been possessed by an earworm for the better part of a week, perhaps more. There I will be, merrily typing along or picking apples from the trees in the front yard for Red to bake into pies or applesauce or any number of culinary delights, and all of a sudden I will humContinue reading “Any way the wind blows”

The archive

I know for certain now how long a half-century is, for I have lived more than that and remember. I know how long 30 seconds are — long enough to tell you what I have to sell, long enough to trash a reputation.  I could do the figures and find out how many 30-second intervalsContinue reading “The archive”

Records of records

Then: Gleefully grabbing slabs of sound, not knowing what they contained but intrigued by the titles. Now: Piles of unplayed still slabs, waiting, waiting to be heard again, performances long ago preserved in moments of glee, or reverence, or intensity, or passion. Next: Undo the piles, listen to the moments, legacies of souls who heardContinue reading “Records of records”

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