Angela and I

Angela and I

Thursday, July 13, 2017

My Summer Playlist

I love music, that's...not new information.  It's what I live for.  Every day is colored by what songs I listen to that day, what album has my heart in it's clutches, what concert is coming up.  I organize my memories by music.  High school is driving around Lexington listening to Underneath and Hello, Good Friend.  The beginning of 2012 was dedicated exclusively to Walk off The Earth.  Two albums came out in 2013 that saved my life (I can't kill myself, I have to listen to this new music...sad but true).  So needless to say, the soundtrack of my life is carefully chosen and appreciated (maybe only appreciated by me but...appreciated nonetheless).  

I never only listen to new music.  I love music for decades at a time.  I mean, my favorite band is HANSON for pete's sake.   Penny and Me is a thirteen year old song and it's magic has yet to wear off.  So...I'll begin this playlist with my summer staple: 

1. Penny and Me - Hanson 
I can't in good conscious make any sort of playlist without including my favorite song, the most played on my itunes, my musical ride or die - Penny.  I want to write a whole blog about Underneath and what it means to me but suffice to say, the day I heard Underneath was the first time I felt anything after nearly a year of feeling numb.  Especially Penny.  It's lyrically dense (which is probably why I'm the wordiest lyric writer in the history of human kind) and doesn't leave out any details.  I strongly believe the reason Hanson has the insane, devoted following it does is because they never tried to be anything other than our peers.  Penny and Me is about driving around, windows down, radio up.  It's exactly what we were/are doing when we were/are listening to it.  Oh, they understand us, they're one of us.  Okay...I have to stop myself now or I'll never move on. 

2. Little of Your Love - HAIM
Wow, another sibling band, awesome KT.  What can I say, I love sibling bands!  Give me those perfectly blended harmonies all day, every day.  But seriously, HAIM released their sophomore album this summer and it does NOT disappoint.  Listen to it.  Drown in it.  I'll never be over it. 

3. Fault Line - Michelle Branch 
Michelle's new album, Hopeless Romantic, came out in April and it still hasn't worn off on me. Michelle.  Hotel Paper is one of my favorite albums of all time.  Anyway, this is my favorite track from the newest record.  

4. Carolina - Harry Styles 
It's true, I boarded the Harry Styles trash train.  I couldn't help it, his album is killer!!  I love every track but this is the one that I crank in the car.  The whole record sounds like Underneath 2.0 to me so sign. me. UP. 

5. Supercut - Lorde 
I read this thing on Tumblr that was like "If Supercut is your favorite track from Lorde's new album, Melodrama, you get high on nostalgia and cried after listening to the album the first time," and honestly I feel incredibly attacked. 

6. So Much Love - The Rocket Summer
It has been a whopping TEN YEARS since Bryce Avary (The Rocket Summer) released his album Do You Feel.  TRS is quintessential high school in my memory bank, but this summer it has made quite the comeback for me because I am seeing Bryce LIVE in less than two weeks and I couldn't be more excited.  

7. Whiteout Conditions - The New Pornographers 
April was a good month for me and music, I guess.  I love this whole album.  I love dense harmonies, I love synths, I love POP MUSIC.  I DO.  I DON'T CARE.  Give me a big fat hook. 

8. Somebody That Wants To Love You - Hanson 
This song is from Hanson's newest EP, In Color which I talked about in length HERE

9. Celebrate - Ingrid Michaelson feat. AJR 
Ingrid (my girl), released an EP called Alter Egos this year, which is basically all reworkings of some of her previously released songs from her last album.  Each track features one of her musical friends (Tegan and Sara, Sara Bareilles, etc.) and it's pretty cool to hear songs I already love in a different way. 

10. Praying - Kesha 

And there you have it!  Some old, some new, a lot of pop but that is...who I am as a person.  If you haven't heard any of these songs, I suggest you look into it!  They all, in some way, give you that "roll the windows down, turn the radio up, push the pedal to the ground" feel. 

Peace, love, and aimless conversations 'bout the better days, 

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Kill the Boy Band: Book Review.

Alright folks, we're rounding third and heading into home.  This summer I took it upon myself to read a bunch of books about fandom, which was mostly self serving (I'm trying to get my own book, which is about fandom, published and I need to make sure I wasn't accidentally stealing anyone's ideas).  The last book on this list was Kill The Boy Band by Goldy Moldavsky.

“Because the truth is, it isn't worth loving something if you aren't going to love it all the way.” 

This book is definitely different than any book, and definitely any book about fandom, that I have ever read.  It follows four girls (Erin, Isabella, Apple, and the unnamed narrator) through a crazy adventure full of kidnapping, crazy fangirls, and murder.  What I loved most about this story was how much it delved into the psyche of the fangirl, something that will fascinate me until my dying day.  It's something I explore a lot in my own book.  There are so many quotes from Kill The Boy Band  that rang true for me, and made me smile as though I knew a secret.  Which I suppose I do.  I know how crazy and exciting and scary and dangerous and awesome it is to love something so hard it makes you hurt.  

The thing about loving something that hard is that it's dangerous.  It's a fine line you walk in fandom, especially bandom and celebrity fandom.  You want to know every detail of these people's lives, what makes them tick, what they want, what they need.  But at the end of the day, they're just people.  One of the astounding aspects of this book is that the girls literally kidnap a member of their favorite band and yet somehow I still think it's a somewhat positive depiction of fans.  Sure, there are some incredibly ugly and terrifying moments, but then you have moments like this: 

“Maybe it was obsession, but it was also happiness; an escape from the suckiness of everyday life. And when you find something that makes you happy and giddy and excited every day, us fangirls know a truth that everyone else seems to have forgotten: you hold on to that joy tenaciously, for as long as you can.” 

 I couldn't have said it better myself. Sure, they got carried away, but...I kind of get it?  I did have some problems with the book.  I didn't find the band that was at the core of the narrative believable at all.  I could understand that they were going for a 1D thing (again...I want a book about boybands in the 90's!!  At the height of the mania!  Someone write THAT book and model the band after BSB!!!) but I just didn't care about the band members in any way, which made it hard to get into the mind of the protagonist. I also feel like the book was campy and was supposed to be campy, but it took me a while to realize that it was poking fun at itself.  The tone was a little confusing.  Sadly, the best part of this book are the pull quotes.  

I'm glad I took on this project and I'm happy to report that I think I have a story that is unlike any that has been written on the subject, so that's cool.  I'm excited to share it...eventually. 

Peace, Love, and Strepurs,