Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Time To Listen

7-22-09 Time to Listen

I feel like I need to set aside a special time where I can concentrate and actually “listen” to some music. Not in my car, but at home – where my ‘proper’ stereo is set up. I want to listen to either an LP or CD, maybe over the speakers, maybe with headphones – look at the LP / CD cover, read liner notes and / or lyrics while I listen etc. I remember one album in particular that I did that with, long ago: Pete Townshend “Empty Glass”. I had a Japanese pressing of the LP, and the British 2LP promo-only interview album. I felt like after listening to all of that, all I had to do was wait for the reviews of the LP to roll in, to see if any reviewers caught something I had missed.

Life goes on, one gets busy – and there is less time to concentrate of careful listening. Also, it didn’t help that CD’s had smaller artwork, compared to LP’s. Sure, many of ‘em had liner notes in the booklet – sometimes with very tiny fonts!

So, the 21st century scenario necessitates an original LP (for the packaging / cover art, a re-mastered CD for the audio ‘quality’, perhaps some opinions of my friends, or some on-line reviews…and available time to actually sit down and concentrate of a particular title.

I have so much junk in my house; LP’s on the floor, on shelves; CD’s in boxes (where I can’t see ‘em etc.) I do not really even have a chair in my bedroom, so I have to sit on the bed, if I want to listen in there. I don’t want to listen in my office, as the stereo in there is really a secondary stereo, with small (Art Audio) speakers. And then there’s the computer, which I do not use for listening at all.

I guess all of this thinking goes hand-in-hand with my idea of a perfect collection – what should I plan on keeping in my collection? Is it something I am going to want to listen to in 1 year? 10 years? When will I stop wanting to listen to this? Will I ever?

When I turned the TV off, about a decade ago, I thought I would have more time to listen – but that wasn’t the case. Other parts of one’s life expand and contract; mostly, I have listened in the car for the last decade. In the Toyota, it was a Minidisc, in the Suzuki, it’s a CD player. In the bedroom, it’s a phonograph…

So, I don’t have the space or, really, the time to listen now – but I want to! I’d also love to have a “listening group” to discuss stuff with – but that really only works if you are all listening to the same stuff. I have a few friends who I could ‘listen with’ one-on-one – and that’s good, too. But I feel like I really need to hear things for myself, and to make my own mind up – when applicable.

We live, we listen.

- Ron

No comments: