Friday, September 15, 2006

I need your list

Hello gentle readers,

Inspired by Film Geek's blog of the Five Films That Changed Your Life, I have an idea that requires your thoughts: Ten Albums That Changed Your Life.

Write a list of the Ten that changed your life and why-then after you've really thought about it, email them to me and I will post them. I have not finished my list yet, so you can email them or just post them as a comment when I put my post up. Either way, it's thought provoking to we music lovers.


The Film Geek said...

I really like this idea. I just linked your call for lists on my site, and I'll mull this over myself and email you a list later in the weekend. Please let me know how it's compiling (if people are participating).

Jackie Lantern said...

I'm in. This sounds cool.
I won't have my list until later this weekend though.

Also, two blogs?!?! How do you manage that?

eclectic guy said...

Thanks bloggers.

Two blogs? LOL. I am glacial in my writing. Thanks for reading.

Anonymous said...

1. John Coltrane Ascension. This record blew my brain apart. I’d been listening for years to rock music -- some very good rock music, mind you, but all metered, all very tonal. The noise, the screeching, and the raw emotion of Pharaoh Sanders’ solo turned my musical world upside down like nothing before or since.

2. Jethro Tull Thick As A Brick. This record really made me become interested in music in a serious way. I still listen to it, and marvel. The lyrics, the orchestration, the performances all the way around are quite moving and thought provoking.

3. Art Ensemble of Chicago Full Force. Old Time Southside Street Dance advances Ascension’s intensity, with Roscoe Mitchell on sopranino saxophone in a circular breathing solo that still makes me laugh till I cry. A monster.

4. Paul Winter Icarus. This was my first exposure to the music of Oregon. Ralph Towner, of course, penned the title tune, but the record features also Paul McCandless and Collin Walcott. These guys truly did create music of another present era. It was world before world was cool. The instrumentation was exotic and somewhat novel and a little intoxicating, but these guys could write and improvise as well as anyone alive.

5. Ralph Towner Solstice. This record opened many, many doors for me. It turned me on to the parallel universe of improvised music happening across the Atlantic, much of it captured on Manfred Eicher’s ECM label. ECM recordings were absolutlely clear, just the sound of the instruments as pure as possible. Ralph’s 12 string gives me chills to this day, and it sounded so crisp in this band. Eberhard Weber, with his 5-string upright solid body electric bass, out Jacoed Jaco, before there even was a Jaco. Eberhard’s records are all utterly fascinating. He is a musician worth investing time and effort exploring. Jan Garbarek - unlike the vast majority of modern saxophonists - got over his love of John Coltrane and learned to sound like himself. And, boy, does he ever. And nobody else does. His recent stuff is relatively unexciting, but Garby was a monster from the early ‘70’s until about 12 years ago. Jon Christensen’s spare but subtly rich percussion sounded like none other on this recording, and he remains one of my favorite drummers to this day.

6. Keith Jarrett Bremen Lausanne Concerts. This was my first Jarrett solo concerts record, and blew me away. Now I have a love/hate relationship with KJ’s music, but this recording was revelatory to me, less for its muscular hubris than for its enabling nature. Given sufficient study and passion, there is nothing the committed musician cannot accomplish.

7. Captain Beefheart Doc At The Radar Station. Musical expressionism. This music is a straight shot of strong whiskey.

8. Tomasz Stanko Leosia. Here is free music with the same edge and urgency as AEC, but unafraid to be beautiful and lyrical when appropriate. Bobo Stenson is my favorite piano picker. He plays exactly the right notes. The chords are neither too rich nor too sparse. Tony Oxley is a monster percussionist, with a unique and unmistakable voice. Tomasz Stanko is as fine a musician as ever put lip to mouthpiece, and has a tone, a voice, an exquisite sadness, to make Miles jealous.

9. Mahavishnu Orchestra Between Nothingness And Eternity. Johnny Mac ripping blues inflected leads on a solidbody electric makes all other practitioners sound like rank amateurs. He is the real deal. I could not believe my ears when he hit them.

10. John Fahey America. I discovered Fahey while learning to build guitars, and this recording was a gift. The sound of the 1930’s era Gibson Recording King (a slope shouldered dreadnought) coupled with the depth of Fahey’s art inspired me with a sound to shoot for. You can make an acoustic guitar with a pure but slightly raspy voice, but near infinite sustain, and there are imaginative artists who can put it to use.

There are, of course, others, but 10 was requested. If asked at another time, my list would be different. Where's Fripp's Evening Star? Collin Walcott's Cloud Dance? Oregon's Out Of The Woods? Yes? Genesis? Gentle Giant? Bill Frisell? Bob Dylan? Neil Young? Paul Bley? Paul Motian? Terje Rypdal? David Murray? Harold Budd? Christy Doran? 10 is enough to make you think, but not really nearly enough.

eclectic guy said...

By the way, anonymous is not the eclectic guy, but a long time friend.

Great list-not surprised by any of it. Good stuff.

It is impossible to choose, but that's what made it fun for me. Ten? That's hardly enough. 100? Maybe, just maybe.