Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Will you please TURN THAT MUSIC OFF!!!!

          A beautiful version of this track

Hullo ma wee blog,

The header to this piece would have been very familiar to my mother, although she would usually have ended it with "and come down and have your dinner" or something similar. Strange - looking at me now you would never believe I missed a dinner in my life!

You may {or not} have noticed that the last couple of posts have had a song posted from a particular concert. I found a series of clips on youtube of Neil Finn {Crowded House} Roddy Frame {Aztec Camera} and Graham Gouldman {10cc} playing an acoustic set together. I really enjoy the stripped back sheer musicality of this type of set and when it's handled by such wonderful singer-songwriters as these three it's doubly special, hence me not being able to resist posting yet another piece  {well two actually} from their set. This set me thinking about music and the blog.

Regular readers will know I often post a copy of what I happen to be listening to as I write {if I can find it} and also you may notice that it often reflects the theme or tone of the post itself. This is an unconscious thing for me. I usually have music on about the place, especially when I'm here on the laptop, and I tend to write posts just on impulse or instinct off the top of my head. Usually I've no idea what is going to come out when I sit down unless I'm doing one of my history posts as they need to be a bit more organised and so I tend to plan them out a bit beforehand, although I do have to confess to having a notebook where I jot down things which come to me that I feel I might be interested in writing about. Over the life of the blog I've come to realise that music is an integral part of my blogging experience so that's why I share the songs that have accompanied the post. Most times a post takes two or three {or more} songs to get me to the end with my limited secretarial skills and so I'll add whatever I'm listening to at the time of publishing and it's often only then that I realise there is sometimes a direct link between what I hear and what I write.

{I've no idea why or even if this is important by the way!}

There have been comments about the songs at times but they tend to be relatively few and far between so I really have no idea if most of you take a moment to listen, listen if I happen to post a favourite of yours or just pass them by. I've often wondered how many people listen and what they think of either just the music or about any connection they might have to the piece?  I wonder if these songs sometimes resonate?  I wonder if I should post them at all -is it important or just a distraction?  Do most people flit in and out without listening?  Would it help or hinder the blog if I dropped them?  Should I post them nearer the start of the post so that readers could hit play if they want and read on while it plays?

In some way though I think it makes the blog more personal, more immediate to me at least and so for now at least they'll keep making an appearance as and when they can.

See you later.

Listening to

          Roddy Frame - Hymn to Grace


Elizabeth Rhiannon said...

Hey Al,
Well, my point of view is one of a music lover; I think it's great that you post music with your post but it's in no way intrusive; you can click it or leave it. I, personally, love the fact that you include music (as noted by my 100+ songs on my own page :) because I do think it adds a personal feel. I almost want people to feel as if they're stepping into my living room when they visit my blog. Similar to you, usually music on, somewhere in my house. I have to admit, I don't always have time to check out what you're listening to, but when I do, I always have a listen and the very least, a look. :)

DB Stewart said...

I think this synergy happens because you actually listen to music, not just hear it. Your choices certainly have an effect on me. I appreciated when you posted Leonard Cohen. And I now own Fyfe Dangerfield music. Keep it coming.

Nicky said...

Oh no, I love them - not only because I enjoy the reminders of great music that isn't played as much on the radio these days (& I also enjoy the opportunity to catch something new if I've never heard the song or band), but also because just as you so nicely pointed out at the end - it really personalizes your blog. I think that's the main thing. As for where to add them - I for one like them at the end because by then I've concentrated on your words & what you had to say. I might get too distracted by the music to really to this if I'm listening because I clicked on it at the start. But not everyone has the concentration of a cat, like me :)

Morning's Minion said...

The choice of music is such a personal thing--and for me the choice varies greatly with my moods and with the level of stress or contentment that I'm experiencing. I tend to choose music to compliment, soothe, or uplift.
I seldom turn on the speakers on the PC--usually only if I'm specifically looking for a particular bit of music.
J. is more of a background noise needer than I am, which can be aggravataing when I would prefer quiet or at least a form of music which is, to my mind, less intrusive. Aggravating for him if I'm roaring, "Turn that down!"
I find I often have music going on "in my head" or realize I am humming something repetitiously. A bit of an oddity, perhaps?
I keep a mental file of things I want to explore in my writing, a process of editing or choosing phrases before I ever sit down to write. It is disconcerting if the piece develops a mind of its own.

coastkid said...

Hi Al, leave the music on!
you have good taste for starters!,
and then its an option for folk to listen or not, feedback is a strange one on blogs, i found a few things got no interest and other things lots, its hard to please all!,

Alistair said...

ER - Aye I know what you mean about the living room comment. It does give a more intimate feel having the music I agree.

dbs - Thanks China {Glasgow rhyming slang -China = 'china plate' = mate} Glad to hear you've found FD. He is a lovely wordsmith.

Nicky - That's a good point about the positioning of the music - obvious, yet I'd missed completely the negative side of posting it early in the piece. Thanks for bringing that up

MM - An oddity? I doubt that... I too am often told that I'm humming or whistling a subconscious tune {tunelessly it has to be said} and that it's interfering with thought processes of 'she who must be obeyed'

CK - It is hard to strike that balance and be consistent I know. I have to admit that at the end of the day I write the blog to entertain myself and feel that posting is in reality an open invitation to share that simple thing. I certainy don't feel that I'm writing for others. I know you feel the same.

Rebecca S. said...

The videos are just fine, Al. I don't always watch them, it greatly depends on how much time I have for reading blogs that particular day, but I do like to have the option. And yes, they reveal a bit more about you, too!

Alistair said...

Cheers Rebecca. Revealing more......may not be a good thing!


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