Upon half-heartedly glancing at old blogs and thinking what I was dancing to at that moment, it occurred to me that I haven’t written a blog yet about one of the things that I find most dear to my heart: music. I cannot believe my negligence. Music is one of the few things that has stayed constant in my service, unlike my stomach, my clothing, and my cooking prowess. And so, I would like to share with you (and I debated with myself quite heavily while I bathed this evening) the music that I have through the many situations I encounter in my strange life here.
Let me first say that I have in my music collection (and I have scaled it down considerably in my free time here) a total of almost 9,000 songs, which is 41.91 GB and 25.7 days of solid tunage. I have, over the course of several bored weekends, acquired all of the album artwork for these songs and catalogued them tirelessly in my quest for the most organized music collection possible. This is only moderately successful, as I seem to double my music collection upon every training event that brings a group of Volunteers together. I still have my favorites, of course, and I have listened to the majority of the library... but there are always more gems to be uncovered...
With that, here goes my list... and this is just full albums, albums that I can actually listen to most of the songs on...
FOR TAXI RIDES. The road is too bumpy to read anything without giving even the strongest stomach a bit of car sickness, and it is approximately an hour from my A to their B. My goals are to stay perky and effectively ignore mostly everyone in the car, unless (like last Sunday) there is a really cool old fella in need of a smile and introduction into the world of the iPod. Plus, the music in the car is usually not conducive to music... So, I listen to comedy shows:
1. Jim Gaffigan – Beyond the Pale
2. Dane Cook – Harmful if Swallowed
3. Mitch Hedberg – Strategic Grill Locations
FOR WORK-OUTS. I’ve got a bike, and ride it often. The best tunes I’ve found for these little treks (nothing angry, because I’m in a village and want to be upbeat, nothing too slow for me to lose motivation, and nothing too offensive, because I’m pretty focused on the music) is...
1. The Neptunes – Clones
2. Outkast – Idlewild
3. Clipse – Hell Hath No Fury
FOR HAMMOCKS. Hammocks are great, and require a certain amount of chillaxin music to offer the premium amount of R & R. Here’s what I’ve got for that.
1. Maxwell – Urban Hang Suite
2. K-os – Atlantis: Hymns for Disco or Yes!
3. Nneka – No Longer At Ease
FOR DANCING. The tunes that will make me dance, no matter the audience.
1. Michael Jackson – Thriller, or Jackson 5 Music
2. Beyonce – I am... Sasha Fierce
3. Justin Timberlake – Future Sex / Love Sounds
FOR REFLECTION. You can’t always be perky, and you have to retreat into some music for some deep breaths...
1. Murder By Death – In Bocca al Lupo
2. 16 Horsepower – Sackcloth and Ashes
3. John Williams – Memoirs of a Geisha Score
FOR COOKING. When I bake, I must dance. Sometimes I sing as well.
1. Amy Winehouse – Back to Black
2. Queen – Sheer Heart Attack
3. Roison Murphy – Ruby Blue
AND FOR ALL THOSE OTHER TIMES. Maybe I’ll go by genre... and try my best to be comprehensive...
Stuff that reminds me of my mama...
Led Zeppelin – Black Dog, Ramble on, The Ocean
Queen – Killer Queen, Bicycle Race, Brighton Rock
Rush – Tom Sawyer
The Who – Pinball Wizard
Stuff that I never knew about until Cambodia...
Citizen Cope – Brother Lee, Nite Becomes Day
Handsome Boy Modeling School – World’s Gone Mad, The Projects
K’naan – The entire Dusty Foot Philosopher & Troubadour albums
Tosca, the opera
My top-played albums...
Mos Def – The Ecstatic
Santogold – Santogold
Rhymefest – Blue Collar
Favs from Cambodia...
Rob Viktum – Progress, An Audio Tribute to the Cambodian People
Ros Sereysothea – Any and All Music (found on the City of Ghosts Soundtrack)
Khemerak Sreymoun – Any and All Music (found on VCDs throughout Cambodia)
Dengue Fever – Dengue Fever
Shantel – Disko Partizani
The Books – Thought for Food
Balkan Beat Box – Nu Med
Kill Bill 1 & 2
Best Happy Music...
Bobby McFerrin – Don’t Worry, Be Happy
Ray Charles – Best of
Mika – Life in Cartoon Motion
The Gypsies – One Hand Up
Jaylib – Champion Sound
Q-Tip – The Renaissance, Aplified
Raekwon – Only Built for Cuban Linx II
Rakim – The Seventh Seal
Jay-Z and Coldplay – Viva La Hova
Wu Tang Clan and the Beatles – Enter the Magical Mystery Chamber
Verve // Remixed
The Soul of John Black – The Good Girl Blues
The Best of Sting and the Police
Tom Waits – Real Gone
There’s more of course... but whenever I work on my computer, my iTunes is set to permanent shuffle, so I always get something I didn’t even know I wanted!