Die Zeit, die ist ein sonderbar Ding.
"He had a theory that musicians are incredibly complex, and know far less than other artists what they want and what they are; that they puzzle themselves as well as their friends; that their psychology is a modern development, and has not yet been understood." – E. M. Forster

Archive for January, 2004

Thursday, 22 January 2004

Various tidbits

Just a number of random and not-so-random thoughts.

Over the holidays, I missed a bunch of Charlie Rose shows that I wanted to watch. So far, I’ve listened to the 8 Kbps Real(bad)Audio streams of his interviews with Cate Blanchett (30 Dec. 2003) and Naomi Watts (19 Nov. 2003) in the show audio archives. If you’re a Blanchett fan, I highly recommend catching this latest interview with her. Not that I’ve seen/heard many, but it’s by far the best Cate Blanchett interview I’ve heard, including the one on Fresh Air. And of the ones I’ve witnessed, I think it’s one of the best interviews that Rose has conducted, with an actor or not. I hope it airs on television again soon. The one with Watts isn’t bad, but I don’t know if I’d listen to it again at 8 kbps… Another decent Rose interview is of Nicole Kidman on 27 Dec. 2002 (also in the audio archives), when she was doing press for The Hours. Hmm. I just noticed that I’ve mentioned only Australian actresses in this paragraph…

I can’t believe we’re already in an election year. The presidential candidates seem to be cancelling each other out. Who’s it going to be? It’s still early to tell, despite what polls say. Please, please, vote this year. If you think your vote doesn’t make a difference, let me say two words: Florida, 2000.

Music still helps keep me sane. I think taping Anne Litt‘s show is one of the smartest things I’ve ever done. These days she’s pretty good about playing Alison Krauss (and she played the Sting song from Cold Mountain…and I still think that "The Scarlet Tide" is a better song), and Norah Jones‘ new song "Sunrise" as well as Clem Snide.

A few weeks ago, I watched Howards End for the first time in at least four years, and was amazed by how much it still moves me, and how beautiful and lonely and powerful it is. It must have been my ninth or tenth time watching the movie, but I still noticed new things. They really don’t make movies like it anymore, and it was made in 1991. I picked up E. M. Forster‘s novel and read bits and pieces. I have a terrible memory when it comes to books, ironically, and so even if I’ve read and studied a book intensely, a year or two later I will have forgotten much of it. So I will re-read, and I will remember some things, but I will rediscover, as "new" many more things. Howards End is an excellent book, and still my favorite. It’s interesting that something I loved as a teenager, I still love so strongly — I guess some things don’t change.

Thursday, 8 January 2004

Bonum annum ingrediaris

I resolve that this year, I will devote more time and energy into completing my music and writings, and that I will be more practical and organized and helpful to and for my family. I’m not really one to make new year’s resolutions: I try to see each day as a new opportunity to be productive and/or creative, and get things done gradually but steadily.

I do hope that, eventually, I will accomplish (or at least step closer to accomplishing) the above resolutions, and some of what I’ve already mentioned in months past — some dreams and some letters to write.

As for being more practical, I’ve finally set up a system to record Weekend Becomes Eclectic. Unfortunately, it’s still not on a timer but at least I can archive them on my own, and listen to Anne Litt‘s playlist during the week if I’ve missed a set or song here and there or can’t listen to the radio for much time during Saturdays and Sundays. Last weekend she played Frank Sinatra, Peggy Lee (a version of "Why Don’t You Do Right" I hadn’t heard before), and even Tammy Wynette, amongst songs from Travis, Ryuichi Sakamoto + Morelenbaums, Ryan Adams, Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash, Radiohead, Goldfrapp and many others.

More practical stuff: I’ve cut back on TV (it wasn’t hard, since this season has been so awful), and when I do watch, it’s usually on tape so I can fast forward through the adverts. And/or I will watch and work out at the same time. I’m trying to read more, including books I read before but have since forgotten. Same goes for music: I’ve drastically cut back on buying CDs, and if I do, I tend to buy used. I really dislike paying current new prices (typically $13-17) unless I’m buying directly from the artist. I’m listening more and more to the CDs I already have — old favorites I haven’t heard in a while, as well as discs I hardly ever listened to, for whatever reason. It’s always odd and interesting to read something and notice something new, or listen to a CD that I thought I didn’t like and end up changing my mind.