Time passages

I’ve read old journals/diaries of mine from the 1970s and 1980s, and much of it is cringeworthy.

from the Oddity Mall
from the Oddity Mall

I read this book last year, Thinking in Numbers, by Daniel Tammet, and discovered that I had something in common with American philosopher William James, who noted that “the same space of time seems shorter as we grow older.” He cites a mathematical explanation by contemporary French mathematician Paul Janet, who noted:

our experience of time is proportional to our age. For a ten-year-old child, one year represents one-tenth of his existence, whereas for a man of fifty, the same year equates only to one-fiftieth (2 percent). The older man’s year will thus seem to elapse five times faster than the child’s…

I came to that same conclusion at least thirty years ago; it’s all math.

Someone on Facebook noted that the TV series The Twilight Zone – Season 1, Episode 1 – “Where Is Everybody?” was presented 55 years ago this month, October 2, 1959. Another commented, “I can hardly believe it.” This response seemed strange. Things that happened 50 years ago (Beatles, ML King, Vietnam) feel like a long time ago to me.

Whereas, when the 20th anniversary of the beginning of the TV show Friends made Jaquandor feel old, that seems more understandable to me. (Not that he’s old, but that he feels so.) Because looking back 20 years doesn’t feel like twenty years when you’re over 40; it’s all math.

Friends isn’t that chronological linchpin for me, as I watched it only about half the time. But the band Nirvana is; the band, with Dave Grohl as its final drummer, just before stardom, got together 24 years ago. Now THAT makes ME feel old.

Looking back can be kind of uncomfortably yucky. Ken Levine listened to tapes of radio programs he DJed in the 1970s and cringes a bit. The Coverville is celebrating its 10th anniversary this fall, but host Brian Ibbott said on that program, “Don’t listen to the first year,” when he was figuring out the format. I know that feeling.

For some obscure reason, I’ve read old journals/diaries of mine from the 1970s and 1980s, and much of it is cringeworthy. The only reasons I keep them are these: 1) I could use some of it to cull out family and FantaCo history; 2) all the terrible stuff I could throw together as a roman a clef.

 

If I had a ballot for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

What I hope will happen is that they’ll pick the great guitarist Link Wray as an early influence, as they have done in the past with people who have shown up on the ballot, deserve to be enshrined, but who most people never even heard of.

From CNN: “Grunge groundbreakers Nirvana, disco dynamos Chic and the costume-clad, Gene Simmons-led pop metal band KISS are among 16 nominees up for election in the museum’s Class of 2014. The deep selection also includes ’70s and ’80s hitmakers Hall and Oates; college radio heroes the Replacements; New Orleans funkmeisters the Meters; sweet-voiced Linda Ronstadt; and pioneering gangsta rappers N.W.A.

“Completing the list: the Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Deep Purple, Peter Gabriel, LL Cool J, Cat Stevens, Link Wray, Yes and the Zombies.”

CBS News adds: “Nirvana, Linda Ronstadt, Peter Gabriel, Hall and Oates, and The Replacements are among first-time nominees to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.”

All eligible nominees released their first single or album at least 25 years before the year of nomination.

Fans can vote for up to five artists at rockhall.com and www.rollingstone.com and www.usatoday.com.

I’ve already made it clear that I would vote for Linda Ronstadt. Beyond that, there are probably seven artists for the other four slots. Pretty much a coin flip, my ballot would include:
Chic, which is newly chic, its sound still relevant.
Peter Gabriel, who was not only commercially successful in the 1980s, but put out great albums before that; if for the song Biko alone, which codified understanding of apartheid to the western world, he’d be deserving. I have a LOT of PG.
Hall & Oates, who not only had massive commercial success over a lengthy period – I am an unapologetic fan – but also are great proponents of music to this day. And though it ought not to matter in this context, I really love Daryl Hall’s solo album Sacred Songs.
Yes, in part as a paean to progressive rock, in hopes that King Crimson gets a nod next time out.

What I hope will happen is that they’ll pick the great guitarist Link Wray as an early influence, as they have done in the past with people who have shown up on the ballot, deserve to be enshrined, but who most people never even heard of.

The Meters, which helped beget The Neville Brothers, was essentially the house band for Allen Toussaint and played on a lot of other people’s albums, so I’m hoping that they’ll get picked in the sidemen category, as Leon Russell did a couple of years ago.

My other pick in these fan ballots was Butterfield, whose three Bs (Butterfield, Mike Bloomfield, Elvin Bishop) were also individually important in rock

Not picking Nirvana, on their first ballot, who will get in anyway. I like them well enough; have three or four of their albums and their sound defined the early 1990s.
Hope the Replacements get in someday – it was their first year as well.
I had quite a bit of Cat Stevens in the day, and I’d pick him if there weren’t people I preferred.
Have the greatest hits of the Zombies, and I’m just not sure a few hits plus one great album warrants the band’s inclusion.
I know N.W.A. is massively influential, despite its limited output, but not feeling it yet.
Never cared for KISS.
Loved the hits of Deep Purple, but guess I don’t know the oeuvre well enough to decide if they merit inclusion.
Know LL Cool J better as an actor than a musician.

Which five artists would YOU vote for?

NOT SHY question

The title song of Simon and Garfunkel’s Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme is Scarborough Fair/Canticle.

I happen to catch the song Magnet and Steel by Walter Egan at my bank, which is also a Starbucks You can LISTEN to it HERE. The backstory: Stevie Nicks sang on this track, and provided inspiration for the lyrics.

I’m a sucker for albums that have a title song but isn’t the title of the album. The album title is Not Shy, a reference in the song. “With you, I’m not shy.”

In Kill to Get Crimson by Mark Knopfler, the lyrics of Let It All Go include “I’d kill to get crimson on this palette knife.”

The title song of Simon and Garfunkel’s Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme is Scarborough Fair/Canticle. Negotiations and Love Songs, and Shining Like A National Guitar are collections of Paul Simon’s songs. The titles are taken from lines in the songs Train in the Distance and Graceland, respectively.

And of course, Nevermind by Nirvana is in reference to a word/words? in Smells Like Teen Spirit. (Oh, speaking of that song, a cover by 2 Cellos.)

Got any other examples of lines of songs that provide the title of an album?