Saturday, 12 January 2008
Simple Things Make Me Happy, Like the Shuffle Feature on My MP3 Player
I guess when I received my MP3 player as a gift this Christmas I was a little behind the rest of you in that it is my first ever player of this type. Formerly I had been wedded to my Mini Disc player never to be parted but men are fickle and I have spurned my trusty disc player for my new musical best friend.
The best bit for me has been blowing the dust from some CDs I've not played for ages, picking the best bits and loading them on to the player. With the rate at which new music is published it is easy to forget how good some of the stuff you already have is. But then the fun really starts when you push the shuffle button: it's like having your own radio station when you know that whatever comes on next you will like but you don't know what it will be. And how weird is it when you get strange coincidences that link tracks together. For instance walking the dog this morning I set off and one of Daniel Barenboin's fabulous pieces from Bach's Well Tempered Clavier Book 1 came on, it was interspersed by much else and then the last track as I stepped through the door was an organ piece by Dieterich Buxtehude the 17th century composer who Bach loved so much he walked a vast distance just to hear him play.
One of the CDs I blew the dust off was Alanis Morissette's Jagged Little Pill. What a stunningly good album that is; and if you (this is for the men) were ever wavering on the verge of unfaithfulness, having Alanis creep up and mug you from your MP3 player is more than enough to put you back on the straight and narrow - who needs Fatal Attraction!
An ageing relative of ours is having an MP3 player for his birthday to help while away hours in hospital. He doesn't have a computer so it will be Mrs C and I who load it with his favourites that include Black Dyke Mills brass band, Nana Mouskouri and Jim Reeves. It might perk him up a bit if I pepper it with the odd track from Alanis or Billy Bragg perhaps. On second thoughts Billy Bragg might send a Daily Mail reader like him into apoplexy - best not eh?.