Welcome to my self-indulgent location for the stories (good and bad) that I can't prevent myself from writing. All comments and criticisms welcome. I post on Tuesdays and Saturdays.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

BlogHop - Personal LIfe Soundtrack

Thanks to arlee bird for hosting this BlogHop.  I've had a lot of fun thinking about this over the past week.  In fact, as soon as I signed up, I set my iPod to random with all 4000+ songs and let it go.  Most things didn't fit, but a couple did, and the whole process encouraged my memory to work harder.  Luckily I have a good 20 minute walk to school everyday.

Be sure to visit the other soundtracks and their awesomeness --->

So, without further ado...

A Soundtrack to a Random Life

random [randəm]: n.  made, done, happening, or chosen without conscious decision.

Maybe a better title would be "eclectic", but as I look over the list, "eclectic" doesn't really work.  The genres are limited, most of the songs fall within a relatively short time.  But this is the sense I want to give to my word "random", not random in the sense of purely arbitrary.  Simply put, these songs seem to represent me by gut instinct, and not by conscious decision.  E.g., a large collection of people coming together to list soundtracks to their lives, people who are barely related in this world, and not perhaps an assortment of haphazard objects thrown in a jar with a firefly for light.

Besides, I love the word.  It doesn't roll off the tongue per se, but it hangs in the back of your throat like a good Anglo-Saxon word should.  Just lovely.

Note:  I tried to get a playlist to embed here.  Unfortunately, either (a) I would have had to link a ridiculous number of additional songs outside the playlist, (b) I just couldn't get the program/widget to work, or (c) the widget came through with 13 of my songs, but the songs would never load.  So, instead, here's a link to a playlist where you can listen to most of the songs.  Others are linked directly below.

Part I: Random Wanderings
  • "Pretty Bird", Jenny Lewis (pictured right).  A life wandering with questionable success, but, oh, what beautiful things you find.
  • "The Wanderer", Dion.  Yeah, I'm not a player, but he's got Rosie on his chest, so...
  • "Walk This World", Heather Nova.  In high school, I was enamored with the idea of this song.
  • "Moab", Conor Oberst.  Inspired from my iPod shuffle, when this came on I kept hitting repeat.  Something about it spoke to me.  "There's nothing that the road cannot heal."
  • "Circles", Soul Coughing.  In addition to seeing them in concert in 2000 in Chicago (a story involving an ambulance, one-way streets, and bad parallel parking), this song perhaps fits more in this category for me because of its lyrics and how I would listen to it every time I would drive home from college.

Part II: Random Memories
  • "Rose Marie", Slim Whitman.  My dad used to sing this to me when I was little. This, of course, is ignoring the fact that I normally responded, "Stooooop!  You're embarrassing me!"  But now it makes me smile.
  • "Walk Like an Egyptian", the Bangles.  One year in summer camp our group performed this song in a region lip-sync contest.
  • "Smells Like Teen Spirit", Nirvana.  Ah, Kurt...  I was such a grungy teenager.  In fact, my senior pictures portray me in a green and blue flannel shirt, a pair of embarrassingly ripped jeans, sitting on my 1967 Dodge Dart (named Daisy).
  • "6'1"," Liz Phair.  College manifesto I.
  • "32 Flavors", Ani DiFranco.  College manifesto II, plus self-esteem builder.
  • "Blue", Eiffel 65.  The dance-scene über-hit the year I studied in Russia.  If it didn't have that association, I would probably strongly dislike it.
  • "Аривидерчи (Arrivederci)", Zemfira (pictured left).  A popular Siberian pop star, this was the first hit off her debut album.  I got to see her in concert in Krasnodar, Russia in 1999.  Did you know that you can light and smoke half a cigarette while playing a thirty-second guitar solo?  Now that's talent.
  • "Tu Veneno (Your Venom)", Natalia Oreiro.  My friends came back from studying in Buenos Aires raving about this woman and saying how, not only did she look like me (or I like her... whatever), but her attitude and demeanor reminded them of me.   Not sure how I feel about that, but it's a catchy song :)
  • "Prawy do Lewego", Kayah and Bregović.  Traditional Serbian music, modernized, and the lyrics translated into Polish.  What could possible be better? :)

Part III: Current Randomness
  • "Pump It", Black Eyed Peas.  When I'm a little sluggish in the mornings, this is the song I play while walking/biking to class to increase the energy.
  • "Measuring Cups", Andrew Bird (pictured right).  Andrew Bird is probably one of the most talented musicians out there right now.  This just happens to be one of my favorite songs.
  • "Handle With Care", Jenny Lewis with the Watson Twins (originally recorded by the Traveling Wilburys, 1988).  I think this song is apt for many of us, not just me.
  • "Starlight", Muse.  If any song could feel like one of my characters speaking directly to me, this would be it.
  • "Bad Romance", Lady Gaga.  So many things!  First, even if it's not the point, they "could write a bad romance".  Second, there are so many echoes in this video of "Thriller" (without mentioning the obvious influence of Madonna).  And, of course, Lady Gaga is oddly fascinating.  I'm sorry, but it's true.  I can only watch the video in awe.

(Sorry for the horrible embedding.  It was necessary to get the official version—a.k.a. the one with decent resolution not made by holding a cell phone in front of the TV.)

What songs might you have?


welcome to my world of poetry said...

I really enjoyed your list, made good reading.

Thanks for sharing.

Hart Johnson said...

I love your international choices--you seem to have lived and traveled all over! And yes--Liz Phair is one I could have included, though probably Help Me, Mary.

arlee bird said...

Interesting choices. I wasn't familiar with too much here, but what I heard sounded pretty good. I can enjoy this soundtrack. And the movie sounds pretty good as well.

Tossing It Out

Anonymous said...

Wow, this is quite an interesting list. I'm feeling a bit ancient as I'm only familiar with a few of them. Admittedly I also had to stop myself from clicking on the "Bad Romance" vid since I've had that one stuck in my head for days now. I look forward to checking some of these out. Thanks for sharing your songs and memories. :)

Jackee said...

Okay, I'm feeling like a really big loser because I didn't know so many of these. I'm off to check out your playlist!

DEZMOND said...

thumbs up for Muse and Gaga ;))

RosieC said...

Thanks, everybody. I'm glad you enjoyed the list. I had a good time putting this together.

For those of you who mentioned it, don't worry about not knowing the songs. I'd say only a third ever got US radio play. I tend to lean toward the obscure.

Happy listening :)

Chary Johnson said...

I love Lady Gaga and her theatricality! Yes, I got that from Glee, which is another favorite show of mine for the moment.

RosieC said...

:) Muse has been my obsession for a long time (is it sad that I got turned on to them from my 13 yr old nephew?). Gaga is definitely coming in a close second. I just watch her videos in awe. I'm glad I'm not alone!

Gregg said...

Very interesting list. I did watch the video out of curiosity - I have never heard Lady Gaga before. Definetly not my cup of tea. Could not see or hear anything musically interesting in that song. But thanks I got to see something I would never had seen otherwise!

Sharon K. Mayhew said...

Okay...this is rather odd coming from me (prim and proper except when I'm on our Harley). Flo Rida is one of my favorite artists. His song ROOTS is really inspirational!

Jemi Fraser said...

Fun list - I don't know them all, but the ones I do are great choices :)

Talli Roland said...

Oh good Lord! I can't even begin to think what songs it might be. I'll have to give it some thought...

DEZMOND said...

Oh, you're not alone in this, Rosie, both Gaga and Muse are huge here in Europe. Both are revolutionary artists in their respective genres and have amazing videos and songs.

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