If you know me you’ll know that music is one of those things that floats my boat. I’ve always had music† in varying forms around me. I, like most, enjoy, value and try to find new ways of seeing through music.
However, it’s been a year or so since I valued any ‘specific’ recorded music. A few artists that I’ve followed for many years have dropped off my list, their output was just not reaching me, and while thousands sang praises about new albums etc they failed to engage me. I found I couldn’t listen to ‘stuff on my list’, it was just not singing anymore. Shuffling through, I would skip, skip, skip and possibly turn it off.
Possibly linked to my period of transition*? I don’t know. I have kept up casually listening to ‘stuff’, with the help of Late Junction, Jools H and Spotify, but, as I say, I was not absorbing any specific artists output? Perhaps the loss of faith in humanity? Perhaps a loss of confidence in past assumptions and values? It’s affected my relationship with music.
However, as you might know, I am revaluing perceptions and pursue a new outlook*.
I recall one specific discovery as a 19 year-old lad, on a grey wintry trip to Woolworth’s in Camborne. I recall reading the lyrics all the way home and… turning on the ghetto blaster in my room… I remember a profound engagement with the sound, the feel, the lyric, the music… OK, it’s not cool, but to me then, it rang of “things bigger”. Since that album, Deacon Blue’s debut album, Raintown. I’ve collected much of their material; the albums, as well as various CD singles from the bargain bin in Woolies. How can you forget such classics as “Dignity”, “Loaded”. “Real Gone Kid”, “Wages Day”, and “Fergus Sings the Blues” etc. Especially when you’ve heard them live in various forms. But more memorable were the album tracks that burned impressions on in brain. I’ve followed Ross and Mcintosh etc and have seen them as a band and individually many times in numerous places. Then I had kids.
Last month, I woke up to hear the immediately familiar tones of Ross and team on my radio! Yes, a processed pop tune, but nonetheless “The Hipsters” had the old sound. A new album; my curiosity was raised. The sound rang round my head. All the familiar sounds came back, the lyrics, the images, the various thoughts and feelings from 25 years ago, that have been layered since, with other thoughts from other artists that also got through to me.
So, I’ve had “The Hipsters” for my birthday, along with socks, slippers, pjs, etc that you get from your kids when you’re 44. Now on my ‘wish list’ is the “Ooh Las Vegas” album that I lost in transit somewhere. And, the overlooked The Great Lakes and Pale Rider that I have spotified repeatedly recently.
Ross and team have always evoked something that I identify with, as have many other’s on my list. So, thanks for the new album Deacon Blue, for awakening my senses.
I had lost the ability to absorb. Fighting the period of transition had hardened my neurons to ‘stuff’.
Imagine not enjoying any food to the point that you don’t eat.
Well now I’m eating, and it tastes nice.
Listen to your breathing.
†by “music” I mean anything that creates a resonating expressive sound. However, as with food, there is “formulaic” & “processed” music and that falls on the edges of my interest. Yes I like the occasional “Flames” burger and pack of “Nic Naks” as much as the next, but there’s a lot of pap out there. It’s advisable to watch your diet – you are what you eat! And, there’s a lot of stuff you’ve never tried. Listen.