Music and me

Created: Wed Apr 10 05:07:44 CEST 2019

Last mod­i­fied: Sun May 19 02:28:27 CEST 2019

A bunch of pic­tures were stolen from Google Images. Except the CMUS screenshot and the pic­ture I took of my bass.

Back in the mid-2000s my mother started show­ing me Ghibli movies; namely the Cats’ Kingdom (in french: Le Royaume des Chats”), Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind, Howl’s Moving Castle (“Le Chateau Ambulant”) etc. etc.

If you know about these, you might re­mem­ber their sound­track. Composed by Joe Hisaishi. (Oh god. Flash.)

The mu­sic, along with the dif­fer­ent kinds of uni­verses brought to the screen by Studio Ghibli’s an­i­ma­tion staff - Hayao Miyazaki be­ing its most fa­mous di­rec­tor - now forms the background” of my ex­ter­nal world perception. Whatever phase” I go through, I’ll for­ever re­main un­der this strange in­flu­ence.

At the time I did­n’t un­der­stand the im­pact those movies had on me. But let’s put them aside.

I dis­cov­ered heavy metal around the age of 11-12 I think. Before that I was lis­ten­ing to what­ever was on my par­ents’ iTunes which clearly was­n’t “enough” for me. A song from that era: Higher Ground” by RHCP (which is Californian Rock if I’m not mis­taken).

I did­n’t want mu­sic for the sake of mu­sic. There are peo­ple who just want something to lis­ten to” as a back­ground. I don’t un­der­stand that.

Basically, I had grown a mind­set for ag­gres­sive/​emo­tional songs. The kind that hold onto some­thing in your belly. (I do have a bunch of “listen while study­ing” songs though.)

Iron Maiden. It all started on Deezer. At the time, I only had a very restricted ac­cess to the in­ter­net. I was crazy about them. Did not know how to down­load songs too, so af­ter I got a glimpse at the discog­ra­phy, including the won­drous Seventh Son of a Seventh Son” al­bum, I put together a rather small, dare I say, hum­ble, 2-songs playlist.

Fear of the Dark”, from their nineties pe­riod, and Run to the Hills”, from their early years.

I lis­tened to those two a lot. Then I learned how to down­load songs from the in­ter­net. From there I started grow­ing my playlist more and more until I learned about other artists such as Judas Priest.

I bought the CDs (had to travel to do so); and even­tu­ally learned about torrenting.

Still, Maiden filled the void for a long time. I would lis­ten to them every sin­gle day. Probably 2-3 hours a day. No need for di­ver­sity at this point. I liked their whole discog­ra­phy. Even the Virtual XI album.

Here is a ran­dom se­lec­tion of songs you might want to lookup for:

I still re­mem­ber the lyrics. Eh eh.

Concurrently, I still knew about other artists. Notably, var­i­ous pop songs” comes to mind. (I liked them don’t get me wrong, but of­ten not enough.) I would some­times bor­row CDs from the li­brary and ex­tract them onto my fam­i­ly’s com­puter. A no­table ex­am­ple would be Depeche Mode’s “Sounds of the Universe”.

Besides be­ing a hard­core and to-the-bones Iron Maiden fan, usu­ally not listening to any­thing else, I man­aged to main­tain a gen­eral (pop?) culture some­what above the av­er­age. I read a lot of books and watched a lot of classic” movies. I never felt like I was a book­worm or a movie-maniac at all. It’s just that the peo­ple who sur­rounded me at that time seemed to­tally un­in­ter­ested in those.

Whereas I now lis­ten to mu­sic all. f-ing. day. with­out in­ter­rup­tion. Whereas I have thou­sands of very spe­cific songs in my playlists that I actually like, I still have friends who barely know of a few pop songs that they lis­ten to every now and then. Maybe I’ve got­ten too se­ri­ous about it but still.

Gradually, I ac­quired a bunch of tools” to help me quench my thirst.

(I com­pleted this list in 2017.)

I then be­came the as­signed DJ of my group of friends.

Back in 2013 (?) I started learn­ing the drums and failed mis­er­ably be­cause I could­n’t af­ford a drumkit at the time.

Years later I fi­nally bought a (bad and now de­funct) drumkit. Bought it on a whim, I don’t know what I thought. Still, I man­aged to be­come a decent drum­mer. Eventually, I bought a bass (Ibanez) which I still have but I’m still not nearly as pro­fi­cient as I should be.

Side note: If you ever want to start play­ing bass or gui­tar, try an Ibanez. What they do is fan­tas­tic. If you want ad­vice don’t hes­i­tate to ping me in the com­ments.

Back in my first years of high school, be­fore I ac­quired the drumkit, a friend and I would of­ten go to the lo­cal mu­sic shop and play with the owner for an hour or so. That was fun. I learned a lot of things about instruments.

At the same time, I started get­ting more and more pas­sion­ate. I grew an obsession to movies’ OST and I came to add some elec­tronic mu­sic to my playlist.

From now on, I would broaden my field of view and be­come that per­son” who (seems) to know every­thing about mu­sic.

I lis­tened to very spe­cific songs. Stuff you don’t find with­out look­ing for it. I dis­cov­ered new gen­res. Until I got an idea of what I was looking for; which is what I un­con­sciously strived for since the very beginning: songs with some kind of emo­tional back­ground.

Here are a bunch of artists I like (non-exhaustive list, I de­lib­er­ately kept it small),

And if you love Jazz, go check the Cowboy Bebop OST com­posed by Yoko Kanno.

If you don’t mind french lyrics check out Joe Dassin’s Et si tu n’existais pas”. I used to lis­ten to it back in the days.

So this post was ba­si­cally me sum­ming things up in or­der to start a series of posts about mu­sic. Next post will be about learn­ing how to play the drums and the post af­ter that will fo­cus on bass gui­tar. It will fea­ture ad­vices that were given to me by an ac­tual bassist who learned bass at the same time I learned to play the drums.

If you want to ex­change songs, drop me an email. I’ll hap­pily share the ones that are dif­fi­cult to find.

Drop your rec­om­men­da­tions in the com­ments!

See you!

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