mix tape

September 1, 2020

I walk a lot, and when I walk, I listen to music. This past week, Tom Rosenthal’s beautiful voice has accompanied me on many a stroll around the university. A few weeks prior, it was North Carolina indie folk band, Beta Radio that set the mood on my walks. The Tallest Man On Earth is always on my favourites list. As are Fleet Foxes, Sufjan Stevens and Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros. I listen to Cinematic Orchestra’s To Build A Home on repeat –– it’s a meditation –– and the same goes for anything by Jónsi. I have really good taste in music, right? I should mention that Cyndi Lauper, Dolly Parton and Barbra Streisand all make the list, too, and that I love the soundtrack to The Greatest Showman. Sometimes, a girl needs a really good power ballad. Enter Harry Styles. Or a really good cry. Enter Bette Midler’s Wind Beneath My Wings. Are you still down with my mix tape? Dire Straits whisks me back to my 80s kitchen (it was the colour of peach fizz) and Neil Diamond reminds me of long drives on the M25 in the back of my Dad’s vintage Beamer. Tanita Tikaram re-entered the fold lately, with melancholy songs that remind me of 90s Athena, dark eyeliner, DMs and all. Zucchero and Eros Ramazzotti wrote the soundtracks to which Jason and I first fell in love, and I can’t listen to Lucio Dalla’s Tu Non Mi Basti Mai without some part of me connecting precisely to the way I felt on the day we got married. Some walks ask for Nick Cave (Into My Arms is one of my all time favourite love songs) and others demand Sia. And every now and then, I simply have to listen to John Mayer. He is my point A. Start here, and work your way out. I understand that my taste in music is as “cool” as it is “uncool.” John Mayer plays in dentist’s office. Zucchero plays in dentist’s offices in Woodbridge. Not even your Mum listens to Bette Midler. And your Dad definitely listens to Neil Diamond. Maybe he’s even tried to rope you into seeing him in concert. I have seen him in concert. And he was magnificent. Music is magnificent. What it stirs in us, the people and places it connects us to, its ability to lift us up, inspire us, teach us and transport us to another space and time. Which is why I don’t think you want a copy of my mix tape, and why I don’t want a copy of yours, and why there’s no such thing as “good” taste in music and “bad” taste in music. What matters is that the taste is your own.

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