morgainex: (Peart)
...a female "High Fidelity"?

This grew out of a post of [ profile] ephemera's, which asked a similar question. It deviated into a discussion of females in rock music generally, and the dearth of good female music biographies and memoirs.

I love music. And I love live to read, so it isn't much of a stretch to imagine that I love books about music. I have devoured music biographies and memoirs since I was a teenager, and can't imagine visiting a bookstore without checking out the "music" section. Hell, I even buy 'em in hardcover if a review or the back cover blurb entices me enough. Generally, that's an honour reserved for Iain M Banks. I even have a dvd copy of "High Fidelity", and yes, was a CHMR-er at university. We joked that to know that is to know far, far too much of me for anyone who went to MUN.

But I've never read a female equivalent. Not even close. An article in the Guardian not so very long ago suggested that men and women view music differently, with men doing the obsessive fan-boy organizing, collating and list-making (not to mention record shop oneupmanship) while women have emotional connections to it. It obviously inspired some dispute - anything that suggests a split along gender lines does. My personal response was that I consider a response to music to be the same as anything else - individual.

But when we considered the books, it got harder to reconcile. Because the best female music memoir I could come up with was Pamela des Barres' "I'm With The Band". And while I thoroughly enjoyed the book, it is peripheral - Pam was, after all, primarily a groupie.

Is that all there can be for a woman? To sleep with musicians? (And I am speaking as someone who married one... :) Of course not, but it's hard to see otherwise. Many of the books about Janis Joplin concentrate on her sexuality - her desperateness to be seen as attractive, the apparent revulsion of her young adulthood, her bisexuality. Marianne Faithfull and Grace Slick's autobiographies are less so, but even given their body of work, the physical body is still brought to the fore. Now I know that sex'n'drugs'n'rock'n'roll is the eternal triumvirate, but there is more. Isn't there?

Personally, I did the obsessive list-making, the searching for obscure versions and bootlegs - my first visit to London was essentially a tour of the record shops in Soho - and I was recognized at X Records, the Bolton collectors' shop, before long, and had the guy there holding things he thought would interest me. I agonized over the best way to organize my collection, and I am certainly glad I got most of the collector bug out of my system pre-E-bay, otherwise... who knows where it might have gone? (Note: divorce, moving and doing the trans-Atlantic relocation thing can be an effective way to rid one's self of the magpie instinct.) But even without doing too much of the magpie thing any more (and my occasional periods of obsessively trawling through mp3 blogs and the number of alternate versions I have of some songs suggests I haven't quite divested myself of that - my music is still a constant mental soundtrack. I can mentally time-stamp events by their soundtrack, and conjure up pictures of who, and what, and where, and when. Right from my first album - "Johnny Cash's Greatest Hits," given to me in 1969, to Cash's version of "Hurt" causing an hiatus in the intense conversation with Paul just over a week ago.

I'd love to read a female memoir that concentrates on her music. Not a feminised copy of "High Fidelity" or "Killing Yourself to Live: 85% of a True Story" or even "Traveling Music: The Soundtrack to My Life and Times" - as much as I enjoyed those - but something that comes from the same place - the place where someone's music and life are inextricable.

So - someone have one to recommend? Someone going to write one?

oh damn.

Sep. 25th, 2007 09:43 pm
morgainex: (Meerkats)
I was just about to go to bed, but there is the prettiest country singer on the Canadian Songwriters' Hall of Fame annual show on CBC... performing Wilf Carter's "There's a Love Knot in my Lariat".

Long, intensely busy day. Am bushed.


Sep. 19th, 2007 02:52 pm
morgainex: (Default)
If [ profile] greyarea hasn't read this, he should - and the rest of the Phil Collins-lovers from one of my posts a bit back. Made me smile; we are all obviously on the same cosmic wavelength...
morgainex: (Default)
"Jock went off to join the bloody army which seemed a damn peculiar choice for a skinny Sid Vicious clone. "

(from Blood & Roses - Bob Short Interview)

Ah, GJW Baird, was that you, then, indeed.
morgainex: (Default)
"Rowdymen of the Rock"

Have you read "Down To The Dirt"? Let me know...
morgainex: (Default)
[ profile] yaaresse gave me the letter K. "K" I thought. Hmmmm... nothing immediately came to mind. Off to iTunes... this wasn't easy...

1. Killerwhaletank - the Tragically Hip (maybe a bit of a cheat, but that's how it's known - a version of "New Orleans is Sinking" preceded by one of Gord Downie's wonderfully surreal tall tales.)
2. Killing Moon - Echo & the Bunnymen
3. Kiss This Thing Goodbye - Del Amitri
4. Kite - U2
5. Kodachrome - Paul Simon
6. Kiss Me - the Cardigans
7. King of Pain - the Police
8. Keep Talking - Pink Floyd
9. Karma Police - Radiohead
10. Kathmandu - Bob Seger

Comment and I'll give you a letter. In your journal, list 10 of your favourite songs that begin with that letter.
morgainex: (Default)
... originated over on the Guardian's music blog, but song lists - I can always read 'em.

So - in 60 seconds - no particular order then, so I'll leave out the numbers:

U2 - One
U2 - Bad
Del Amitri - Here and Now
Jeff Buckley - Hallelujah
The Cult - She Sells Sanctuary
The Sisters of Mercy - More
Dire Straits - Romeo and Juliet
Steve Earle - I ain't Ever Satisfied
The Tragically Hip - Boots or Hearts
Rolling Stones - Gimme Shelter

... that's 10, then. And there's no Leonard Cohen, or Lucinda Williams, or Ryan Adams, or April Wine, or Blue Rodeo, or Bob Seger, or Bruce Cockburn, or Cowboy Junkies, or, or, or...

(ETA: No Nick Cave at all? No "Sometimes always" by JAMC? My god, what was I thinking?)

morgainex: (Default)
Read more... )
morgainex: (Default)
Seven songs I'm enjoying at the moment:

- "Come pick me up" - Ryan Adams - just heard a cover of it last night that reminded me of how much I loved it - some of the lyrics are:
"Come pick me up
Take me out
Fuck me up
Steal my records
Screw all my friends
They're all full of shit
With a smile on your face
And then do it again"

- Lucretia My Reflection - the Sisters of Mercy (I dunno, it sounds summery to me)

- Help me - Scott Goudie & Neil Bishop (old track by a couple of local guys, great slide guitar)

- Nowhere with you - Joel Plaskett (really summer pop from Halifax, NS)

- Ghost Highway - Mazzy Star (from a live bootleg)

- I am, I am - April Wine (always loved Myles' voice, and this is from their most recent album, a retro-recorded return to their roots)

- Sometimes Always - Jesus & Mary Chain with Hope Sandoval (lovelovelove this, always)


Jul. 7th, 2007 04:15 pm
morgainex: (Out The Window)
The confused faces in the audience as Spinal Tap do "Stonehenge" at Live Earth...
morgainex: (meerkat evening)

It's been a youtube & emusic evening. Must finish updating the iPod.
morgainex: (Default)
[ profile] pshtaku's post on musicians originating from Scotland: here, but f-locked, and who/why you love them, originally inspired by this website and BBC2 is a great head-scratcher's way to lose a few hours.

My answers, reproduced from my comment on her journal )

ETA: I missed out the Bay City Rollers, the only boy band I ever loved, evah. [ profile] wingedelf, do you know Martyn Bennett's work? I bet you do... and he was born here in St John's, to my surprise. And I left out Ian Anderson, and Midge Ure, and Deacon Blue, and the Blue Nile... and god knows who else...
morgainex: (Default)

26, 27, 28, 29 JULY 2007

Joan Baez Nanci Griffith The Waterboys Steve Earle
Kate Rusby Toots & The Maytals Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder
Toumani Diabaté & Symmetric Orchestra Under One Sky Show Of Hands
Sharon Shannon Bellowhead Alabama 3 unplugged Oysterband
Bruce Cockburn Martin Simpson Four Men & A Dog Fanfare Ciocǎrlia
Solas Shooglenifty James Hunter C.J. Chenier & The Red Hot Louisiana Band
Fiddlers’ Bid Allison Moorer Brian McNeill
The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain Le Vent du Nord Kris Drever Seasick Steve
Rachel Unthank & The Winterset Lau Ruthie Foster Haugaard & Høirup
Martha Tilston Mabon Jaune Toujours Newton Faulkner
Breabach Stömp Last Orders Mr Boom

The Waterboys and Steve Earle and Bruce Cockburn and Joan Baez...
morgainex: (Default)
Just flicked the tv on, to hear "Driving with the brakes on".
By someone called Doc Walker.


morgainex: (Default)

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