So, readers, what music have you been listening to lately this curious writer wants to know?
I mean it.
Feel free to send me in your comments the title of one tune that recently hit the right chord. Who performed it? How did you listen to it? Vinyl? Spotify? CD? Alexa/Siri? Why did it touch you?
I’d love to compile a playlist of your selections.
So, please comment with something like this:
“Don’t Let Us Get Sick”
(YouTube link to the tune)
It reminds to be grateful for the friends in my life.
I’m looking forward to holding this tuneful tête-a-tête with you!
Meanwhile here’s the first of what I will be many playlists over the months to come.
This first list unfurled from the night before and through my five days at the Ashokan Center (https://ashokancenter.org/) in Olivebridge, NY, where I was attending their Northern Gathering, taking guitar lessons and enjoying the company of fellow guitarists, fiddlers, and players of recorders, mandolins, accordions, and banjos.
(Ashokan co-founder Molly Mason, seated, on her Martin guitar, with husband and co-founder Jay Unger on mandolin during a guitar lesson.)
The playlist below is really a dialogue in tunes I collected during those magic days and nights with a beloved I’ve known for fifty-six years.
Somehow my instincts told me to keep track of all these tunes for posterity. From the get-go, by sharing each song on Facebook, I turned the social media site into a facet of the journal I was keeping during those cosmic days. Once home again, I compiled the list, scrolling through my Facebook feed to capture each recording. I was surprised and delighted how organically eclectic the selections were.
And I was reminded again: Music sustains joy.
Cyndi Lauper – Girls Just Want To Have Fun
The Ramones – I Want to Be Sedated
“I kid you not.”
West Side Story – Tonight
New Christy Minstrels – Today
“A while ago”
Bob Marley and The Wailers – Jamming
“And just now…with dancin’ grooves.”
Meghan Trainor – All about the Bass
“A first on a night of firsts.”
Placido Domingo and Andrea Bocelli – Pearl Fishers Duet
“Let there be opera … in such delicious doses. The back story was equally delicious.”
Leonard Cohen – Tower of Song (Live in London)
“Ain’t it the truth?”
Memphis Millie – Me and My Chauffeur Blues
“And the magic keeps rolling on.”
Stan Rogers – Northwest Passage
“When with a singer, listen to a singer in exchange.”
Robbie O’Connell and Finbar Clancy, Kilkelly Ireland Song
“Another long story about loss in song. We need these too.”
B-52s – Love Shack
“Happy-hour time, post day of guitar camping!”
Blue Brothers – Soul Man (SNL)
“Changing it up, good buddies.”
The Jive Aces – Bring Me Sunshine
Tom Waits – Downtown Train
“My turn…a fave…going out to Ann Tippett.”
Tuba Skinny – Going Back Home
“Get out that banjo, Roseanne Mascari.”
Stevie Ray Vaughn – Chittlins Con Carne
Haley Reinhart, Vintage Marilyn Monroe style Brittany Spears – Oops! I Did It Again
Jackson Browne – Yeah, Yeah
“Lyrics, people, and a good dance workout.”
Linizi Zaorski – Better Off Dead
“For the sake of you never know.”
Joni Mitchell – You Turn Me on Like a Radio
“For miles of smiles.”
Santana with Rob Thomas – Smooth
“Yes, yes, yes. Best ad for PRS Guitars ever.”
Herman’s Hermits – Mrs. Brown You’ve Got a Lovely Daughter
“56 years ago this was a tune from the soundtrack of my love.”
Ukulele Ukes – Just a Gigolo
“For Lori Skoog … uke it up, girl. I’m hearing a live rendition.”
(Music’d out. Almost.)
Don White – I Know What Love Is
“The penultimate tune of my Ashokan adventure.”
Jay Ungar – Ashokan Farewell
“Last on the Playlist. Jay Unger, the fiddler, and his wife Molly Mason (on the Martin) were my teachers, especially Molly. Both are the dearest people. Unforgettable.”