I’m listening to and want to highly recommend a gorgeous album/cd, ‘Gilles Peterson presents Sun Ra and his Arkestra: To Those of Earth…And Other Worlds‘. I’m a huge fan of soulful music in all it’s forms, and even more so when it is really well recorded. This album has it all including the magic of the unexpected. Sun Ra to me defies genre’s and categorization. At times he and his arkestra sound like jazz, then a film soundtrack, to doo wop, then blues and on and on. I had the good fortune to see Sun Ra and his eclectic band at First Avenue in Minneapolis with a dear friend who had no idea what he was going to listen to. He seemed suitably blown away, though I seem to remember some rather potent herb may have contributed to our experience.
Not to sound like an old fuddy duddy, but often older music to me just has more depth and character. Maybe artists had more room to explore their creativity and less pressure to have a hit ‘now’ way back when? I also want to put a plug in for Gilles Peterson who is a dj of sorts with a great weekly Saturday show on BBC 6 Music. I stream this through TuneIn radio and there are always gems he unearths that are beautiful and totally surprising. He tends toward more modern electronica for lack of a better word, but so tasty.
For many now it seems music has become a sort of background sound to their day a wallpaper of sorts. I think this is a downside of iPods and streaming and iTunes, having a jumble of music that plays on shuffle with no context or continuity or story arc. So I plant my flag for taking the time to sit down and really listen and drift off into the creative dreams of whatever music really moves you. One of my fave forms of meditation.