2008 Retrospective | 01/01/09
And thus ends 2008, the worst year of my life. I don't mean that in a boo-hoo way, more in a point-of-fact way--like saying 2001 was the worst season the Cubs ever had. Like I told Kathy yesterday, it's good to have gotten it out of the way so early; I now get ~50 more years knowing that I've already paid my life-dues. I thought I would offer a musical retrospective on the year and bring back the songs I retired from my playlist. I'm OCD about certain songs and I go through great lengths to associate certain songs with certain periods of time. For a light example, when Chris and Miker came down from Indiana to visit in Florida for the first time I made sure to listen to nothing but that song so now when I hear it I can think of that time and of nothing else. Unfortunately it's a not a song-per-month but it's reasonably close.
John Denver - Take Me Home, Country Roads: Before I moved to Washington, I was working two jobs to make sure I'd have enough money to survive up here. In addition to doing my own stuff I worked for a company writing the software that powered what essentially was a pyramid scheme. It was the most laid-back of any job I'd ever had and I got some old country music to celebrate that. I also had my own office, which was about 4x the size of my current one. Every morning I listened to Bob Denver to get my day started and this was always the first song.
Jimi Hendrix - Red House: I like bottle up my feelings in a certain song and then never listen to it again. That was the case with this one. Just hearing it now...ugh. I should have picked a U2 for exile so I wouldn't miss hearing it.
Allman Brothers - Sweet Melissa: I forgot how much I missed this song. I had been learning this song on the guitar when I moved and once I got up here I had more than ample time to practice it.
Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers - Mosiac: Like anyone down I listened to a lot of jazz and while not doing much of anything. I started doing a lot of volunteer work and taking guitar lessons to feel better. In retrospect, it was good because I got involved with the HGA and picked up a good story about raiding a pit bull shelter.
Robert Plant - All The King's Horses: By early summer it was time to get over myself and so I did. I wrote a lot of music during this time and looking back on it, it's all pretty bad. Nothing makes for bad music like trying too hard.
Coldplay - Low: Brian had posted on his blog that XM was offering an all-Coldplay channel. I had never been a fan of their stuff but since it was going to be the "Summer of Mike" I'd try new things and as part of that would endure a month of Coldplay. I would not suggest this. I also watched a few movies during this span as I tried to get more hip to modern culture. Yikes, we'll stick with Zeppelin and the Grateful Dead.
Edward Elgar - Enigma Variations: Once a year or so I'll get into a classical phase for a few months and not surprisingly it followed the amusical period of Coldplay. I wish I had a better recording of this piece but I'm sure you'll get over it.
The Eagles - Seven Bridges Road: When I found out The Eagles were coming to DC I was excited and started listening to a lot of their stuff. This was before I remembered that no one up here does anything beyond a two block radius of their house. I still don't know how you pass up the The Eagles.
Bob Dylan - Girl From The North Country: Oh God, the Bob Dylan phase. I both think and hope this phase is coming near a close because he's all I've been listening to for the past two months. I had never heard this song before and was driving back across the Key Bridge when it came on. Because I'm a man who went to the coldest game in Soldier Field history, I don't feel like too huge of a puss to say I teared up while sitting in traffic. No one does more with three chords than Bob Dylan.
Bob Dylan - Moonshiner: And this is where I am now. It's been a very eye-opening year and this song caps it off nicely. Fortunately, I have not become an alcoholic.
Hooray for 2009!