Okay, so this week is a hectic one for me. I will be performing in Kiss Me Kate this weekend (shameless plug). So, with that said, I have very little time to write a column this week. Instead of the neat and comprehensive article I usually write, this week you will find a disjointed list of what I am listening to right now. Since I am doing Kiss Me Kate, I thought that I should surround myself with old time musicals. Naturally, I have been listening to Rent nonstop for the last day or so. Why Rent, you may ask? Well, because it is an amazing album even if you have never seen the musical on stage. It has great pop songs, great ballads, and most importantly, a great message.
Also on the musical front I have been listing to Ragtime a lot. Since it is the only other musical I own, I thought I should listen to it to get the feel of the classical musical style (even Ragtime was written in the 1990s). Not to mention that the baseball song is hilarious.
Now, since I write the indie column, I thought I should mention the other things I am listening to. First and foremost, here’s what I am listening to right now as I type this: Imperial Teen’s amazing debut album, Seasick. Lead singer Roddy Bottum, besides having one of the best names in rock and roll, is the former keyboard player for the 1990s band Faith No More. I never liked Faith No More, but I do love this album.
This album contains some of the greatest poppy punky girl/guy singing ever found on tape. When I first got this album back in ’96 it never left my portable tape player. Once I got my own car this tape would remain playing for two or three weeks at a time. Seriously, this is one of my top five records of all time.
Another current listen would be the new Hayden Desser album Live at Convocation Hall. This two-CD live album spans his entire career, from 1995’s “Everything I Long For” to his 2002 release, “Skyscraper National Park.” This album is just Hayden with his acoustic guitar, piano, and a harmonica. He does some unreleased songs and a Neil Young cover, and this version of “Lullaby” contains some great live strings.
Oh, I almost forgot! Last time I went to the library I got this amazing CD. Now, a lot of my friends know how much I love Schubert, especially his piano sonatas. Well, this time I stumbled across Schubert: The Complete Works for Violin and Piano. I have always called Schubert the pop musician of composers; I mean, his melodies are so catchy, especially here. Sonatina in G Minor D. 408 is really good, but mostly I recommend Fantasy in C Major, D. 934. Fantasy is 26:05 minutes of pure piano/violin bliss, especially the opening passage.
Well, that just about does it for this week. I will return soon, hopefully well rested and with other words from the indie scene (and maybe some more Schubert).