Friday, September 15, 2006
an ode to iTunes
My mornings are usually a bit rushed. Depending on the day I’m dragging one or two boys out of their warm beds and trying to get them fed and dressed before shoving them into the world. Did I mention that I’m trying to do the same thing for myself?
At any rate once they are taken care of and placed in their respective locations for the day I’m off to Scripps for the next several hours. I know that Jamison once told me that leaving the computer on over night is one of the worst things you can do to a hard drive, still I have my reasons. In fact this reason is one of the simple pleasures I have learned to really enjoy.
The iTunes on my desktop has 3936 songs, in rotation over 13.2 days taking up 17GB of space. When I show up in the morning it’s a great joy, almost anticipation, to see where the shuffle has landed. My favorite times are when I walk into the middle of a powerful Dead jam from the first balcony, sometimes I stroll into a small Irish pub for a bit of harp or a bouncy reel. Other mornings I feel like I’ve caught a lively Texas road house jam with Lyle Lovett, SRV, Robert Earl Keen and Willie Nelson stopping for a breakfast after restful nights on the tour bus. Some mornings I’m reminded to count my blessings with a song from Rich Mullins, hymns from the Harding Univ. choir or any number of country crooners off a collection of classic country gospel albums. Composers like James Horner, Duke Ellington or Henry Mancini line up to audition their favorites while Andrea Bocelli and Charlotte Church share stores and theories of technique with Ella Fitzgerald and Billy Holiday. In the corner of this musical transit station there are corners of country and bluegrass musicians who are looking for a cross over jam. Jerry Garcia and Bela Fleck pick out tunes with Dolly Parton taking vocals, Bush, Vassar and Monroe, trickle in between bass riffs from Rob Wasserman. Kelly Clarkson, KT Tunstall and Robinella take turns sitting on the knees of their predecessors, slowly spreading their wings. Discussing the power of modern amplification the Green Day, Led Zeppelin and Clash guys share hearty pints with Beethoven and Verdi. Glenn Miller and Jimi Hendrix sip coffee with Marty Robbins and grumbling members of the Marsalis family.
I know that I’m adding untold years to this computer by leaving in on during the week but I love to come in and slide into my cheap headphones to see what sort of sonic trick or treat I get. It should be noted that there are time when the stars have not aligned and there is something playing that causes me to sift through all that crap to find something that’s perfect to me. Sometimes after a hectic morning and a glance at my tasks for that day I’m not in the mood for a primal drum circle. Hearing a screeching guitar or soulful moaning about languishing relationships could make me go postal some mornings.
Still, with a few clicks of the “next” button I’m eventually transported to the perfect setting allowing my day to begin anew with my heart literally singing a new song.