Thursday, August 26, 2010

Music: the Formative Years

I'm sitting here drinking Turkish coffee dreading a certain visitor who'll be arriving today. I don't have to worry about him seeing this because he's way too self involved to read anyone's blogs. He's one of Arthur's "friends" from back home. I try not to be mean to him but he's a conversation hog, an attention whore and a general social retard. He seeks approval but when he gets it, he abuses it by acting out like a fool. His idea of "charm" is to be loud and flamboyant. He staggers around with no real direction flopping into total strangers. It can be pretty embarrassing to be in public with him, especially if he decides to start dancing for no reason. He claims to be interested in film and "music" but that's pretty much limited to his Tom Cruise blu-ray collection, U2 and Lady Gaga (sorry, I've got no love for her, but that's another blog), and of course the Beatles and Bob Dylan because that's like hipster 101. You can't be christened into an edgy persona before you've passed that milestone. See, I can't help but feel a little ruthless when it comes to this guy. I also feel like he's gay for Arthur and see's me as some kind of eminent threat to his "friendship". There has been more than one time he'll stick his neck in between me and Arthur if one of us is saying something to the other quietly. I can't believe he actually is coming to my territory. We're going to be back in California in a month and then I'll never be able to get rid of him. This Florida visit seems somewhat unnecessary.

ANYWAYS. That little vent should probably be under lock and key in my private journal but I just couldn't resist. These are stressful days leading up to the wedding. No, he's not staying for the wedding, he just came to distract us from everything. I told Arthur that if things get hairy I won't hesitate to leave and go shopping. He laughed and said "fair enough".

Ok, back to what's happening in Nowsville. On facebook someone tagged me in a note where they list the 15 albums that have stuck with them the most. In turn, I make a similar list with my choices. So naturally I start this epic list of all of these albums I love and have loved for years. It was hard to eliminate to a measly 15. Summing up 24 years of music listening into something like 20 hours of music. That's not even an hour for every year of my life!! It was really difficult and I felt guilty leaving some important albums off, so I decided to apply this same thing to a much more elaborate blog (or blogs, rather). Also, I think it will help get my mind off of all the stress. I'm not going to limit myself to a certain number. But I am going to break this up into eras. For this entry, I'm going to focus on everything pre-highschool. Omg, this might be a little embarrassing but here it goes in semi-chronological-order-to-when-I-discovered-it.....

This was officially the first piece of music that was "mine". I'll never forget Christmas morning when I was SIX YEARS OLD opening a big present. It turned out to be a GIANT purple Caboodle!! Remember those??? I'm pretty sure they still make them but as far as I'm concerned they belong to the 1990's. My Mom was so sneaky! She put the Roxette CASSETTE TAPE inside the Caboodle so it would be a surprise when I explored all of the compartments. And it was a wonderful surprise! One I still remember 18 years later! I really don't remember what this album sounds like at all though, I should download it!

Oooooh! How do you say Deee-lovely? Deee-vine? How do you say Deee-lite! Naturally being like 6/7 I was taken in by the amazing catchy-ness of Groove is in the Heart. I wanted the whole album but my Mom got me this Cassette single. Which was still fine! I played it until it warbled and warped. Now I've several of their albums on cd and pop them in any time I need to put on my platform shoes and go-go dance with Miss Lady Kier...which is all the time, by the way.

I believe this was my very first cd! I think I was ashamed of that for years but now looking back I'm kind of proud! En Vogue was pretty fucking hip. They got a little modernized with their late 90's albums but this one was a lot fun. Kind of Pointer Sisters-esque. I always thought they were GORGEOUS too, all of them! OMG...I need to download this or something.

...are you noticing a trend of female vocaled groups?? Make note of it.

I'm not sure where but somewhere along the line I heard "Sugar, Sugar". Maybe on the radio, maybe in a movie. I can't remember, but I thought it was the cutest song ever. I asked my Dad who it was and he said "the Archies"...I said "WHAT?? favorite comic???" I had NO idea that the Archie Digest books I'd been hoarding for years had anything to do with music. This was when I was given a brief lesson in the whole Archies sensation in the 60's. Not long after this my Dad came home with two records in hand, making this my very first LP. Isn't that cute?? I still have it :-)

Don't ask me why Dad chose this as my OTHER first record. I'd never seen this movie but I think he thought I'd enjoy the disco tunes. He was pretty much RIGHT! I LURVED this! Oh God. I'll never forget my Beegees phase. It's sort of like the Big Chill soundtrack though. The movie isn't good, you see it EVERYWHERE, you want to deny that you like it but somehow it's just a staple of it's time.

Oh, Clueless. How you changed my life. Being an impressionable FOURTH GRADER I pretty much made a conscious decision to become a character in this movie. My back to school clothes for the following year consisted of brightly colored mini skirts and knee socks. Yes, I was like 11 and dressing like Cher Horowitz. My Mom thought it was adorable, I got made fun of by the rednecks at my lame Christian school, but I didn't care. They were a bunch of "Barneys". This soundtrack made a HUGE impact on me. Discovering bands like Luscious Jackson and the Muffs lead me to riot grrl and that would of course become one of the most character defining aspects of my teenage self.

Say what you will about the Spice Girls. They're loud, obnoxious, garishly dressed and put together by a studio. It's apart of Pop Music history that most people try to forget. I remember the first time I heard "Wannabe"! I was in my room, my Mom was having a dinner party downstairs and it came on the radio! I turned it up so loud that she came and yelled at my to turn it down :-).  I was already inspired by the bold fashion statements of Miss Lady Kier and Cher Horowitz, the Spice Girls were the proverbial nail in the coffin of my day-glo freak-fest attire. And yes, "Girl Power" totally attributed to what would later become my riot grrl obsession, although I've read it was supposed to be a sell-out cash-in on the growing trend of grrrl bands. Ha! What 5th grader cares about those kind of politics though?

Did anyone out there ever read Twist magazine? It's a teen magazine from England that I bought because the Spice Girls were on it and it became my staple teen-mag for years. I was sad to see a copy the other day at Books-a-million with Justin Bieber and a bunch of other retards plastered all over it. It now looks like Tiger Beat or something. Kinda sad, I thought it was so cool! The fashion and articles were a little different from other teen-mags like Seventeen and YM since it was published in Europe.

holy shit....this is ALL really bringing me back.

omg. this album is SO good. I actually rebought it this past Christmas. She samples Donovan and a bunch of other great stuff. She has this kitschy sound that I love. The ENTIRE album is good. I farking love it!

Wow, so the Cardigans were pretty much just amazing. I'm sure I wasn't alone in totally falling into the "Lovefool" obsession. I think they may be considered one hit wonders but this WHOLE album is good! Although I don't remember the cover being this "blah".

Another one that was considered one hit wonders, again I say, this whole album is worth a look. And I had the biggest crush on the lead singer!

My first Beck cd! That's kind of a milestone! I remember being disappointed because I wanted Odelay, but naturally ended up loving this one. I don't think I could pick which one I like better!

Discovering the Monkees is an important part of a young girls life. They make the Arches look like popcorn. The Monkees defined everything I wanted from the 60's. Their music is fucking amazing, ALL OF IT, and they're ADORABLE. They would remain of my all time favorite bands FOREVER.

If Clueless gave me the itch for girl bands, Jawbreaker pushed me over the edge. It's basically Clueless
with murder so it opened up a whole new world for me. Discovering bands like Letters to Cleo, Shampoo and the-fucking-Donnas was like tapping into a goldmine!! I listened to this cd every day on my way to school on my discman :-)

Indeed, Letter to Cleo is necessary part of 1990's sanity. This has always been my favorite of their

SHIT! Where is my head?? This should have gone like 5 albums ago. Ok, so the Weezer Blue Album isn't really anything to be proud of. It's really just a staple and I'd be lying to myself if I didn't include it because there was a time I was OBSESSED with Weezer Blue, Pinkerton and Green (nothing after green though, and that wouldn't be until 9th grade)...there are worse things a pre-teen could be obsessed with? Look at what teens have to deal with now!

Oh Goodness. This looks so tacky but the music was so fun! I kind of need this again.

I remember getting this album! I was in 7th grade I think and my Grandma took me to the Commissary. I was looking for something else and then I saw THIS. I didn't know what it sounded like but it was brand new and I remembered several years earlier thinking "stupid girl" was amazing. Soooo, I begged my Grandma for it! She bought it for me and it became one of my most listened to albums of my middle school days. I need this one again too!!

This album mystified me. No one I knew had ever heard of the Eels (I live in a really shitty town), I had it special ordered at Camelot after hearing "Novocaine for the Soul" in a movie. I should really get more of Mr. E's music, it doesn't ever go out of style!

Best for last!! My last musical obsession of my middle school days was the discovery of Cibo Matto.
After hearing "Sci-Fi Wasabi" on my cousin Kat's mix I fellll innnnn looooovvvvvveeeee!!!! It's like all of my music listening had been leading up to that moment and my life would never be the same! Once Cibo Matto came in the picture I wanted to find more like it, and so my high school career became nothing less than a HUNT for the loudest, cutest, scariest, sweetest, weirdest, pop-iest, punk-iest, funn-iest, girl-iest music EVERRRR!!!!

...but that's for another blog.

Maybe not the hippest taste ever, but not bad for a kid stuck in Panama City Florida. I left out some things that I'd rather forget like Bush, Sheryl Crow, No Doubt, TLC...actually, I don't necessarily dislike those now (except Bush maybe), I just didn't want to emblazon them all over my unicorn blog!

I was only supposed to work on this until my coffee cup was empty but that was like an hour ago and I pressed on! Now I'm officially running late, but who cares? This was fun! Now I think I have to grab some middle school era music on my way out the door.

I love you, my baby-corns!!!

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