I grew up listening to music from start to finish.
That might not seem like that crazy of an assertion, but I assure you in the current day of Spotify and Pandora, it actually is.
When was the last time you listened to an album from start to finish without stopping?
There is a certain beauty to the way an album can intricately weave a story from song to song. I was first introduced to this concept when listening to The Who’s, 1969 Album “Tommy”. I was probably 8 years old, and I distinctly remember visualizing this deaf, dumb and blind pinball wizard from my captain seat in my family’s white Chrysler minivan. I was mesmerized. My dad explained that this album was the first of its kind…a rock opera inspired by Pete Townshend’s idea that the album could represent a full musical story. It was exciting and beautiful while not including any of the familiar trappings of engagement I was used to as a kid of the 90’s (hello, Nickelodeon)
In discussing the album, Townshend said:
In many ways, the popularity of the album as story was largely tied to the hardware used to listen to the music at that time – the vinyl record. Unlike Spotify (or dare I say, Tidal), records require your full attention from the moment you buy them. They have to be cared for (don’t get that shit dusty!). And, they’re definitely not cheap compared to Spotify’s $9.99 unlimited music each month.
But, in my opinion, this investment of effort and money, all adds up to something else.
Records require you to slow the fuck down, listen, and appreciate.
They allow you to listen to an album for decades and find new and interesting interpretations of the stories being told.
They allow you to appreciate the meticulously created orchestrations of the songs and stories.
To me, this is truly awesome.
While I love curating playlists for when I’m on the go, I find that I crave this time with my records as they provide me time for reflection and appreciation.
So, what am I currently listening to?
Check it, here.