Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Make-Out Mixes

A friend asked if I'd ever made a make-out mix, which inevitably led to a discussion of which tracks could be on such a mix and which could not. I'd never made a mix like that before. The closest I'd ever come was a jazz/chillout playlist I made for an evening when I was preparing dinner for someone.

I'd been at her place a few days earlier and we let her iPod, set to random, do all the work. Most of the music I'd given her, which, on the one hand, meant music I loved was playing. On the other hand, I love oddball music. The obscure singer/songwriter tracks were fine, but the techno and hardcore punk were so mood-crushing as to be funny. Which served to kill the mood that much more. So I compiled a generic list that was, at least, free of egregious mood killers.

The mix was playing while I was preparing dinner (chicken in a red wine marinade, I think) and José Feliciano's cover of "California Dreamin'" came on. My date wasn't there yet, but all I wanted, when I heard that song, was to hold her close and dance so slowly to the soft sounds of that guitar.

This is the mix I put together from that memory, and maybe that mood dominates more than it should. Instead of being a make-out mix, this is the soundtrack for a lonely late night drive in autumn across unadorned Midwestern plains. I don't know if the person behind the wheel is driving to or from someone, but that someone's the only thing on the driver's mind. There's a radio signal fading in and out, broadcast by a DJ who doesn't know what he's doing to that driver, but the DJs never do.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

excerpts from my note file

Writing love letters to dead friends.
I still get caught sleeping.
There was nothing, there was nothing, there was nothing, then there was you.
If I say I was in love with her, is it because I was or because I'm looking for sympathy?
I'm elegiac of the women I don't meet, nostalgic for the memories we never made.
Do you remember the things you burned?
I'm trying to move from bitterness to generosity.
There will be glass in the fruit before this is over.
Burn your birdhouse down.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Previews of tapebombs 8, 9, & 10

As I'm preparing what will be tapebomb 10, I realize:
  1. that I have yet to make covers for and distribute tb's 6 & 7
  2. that I had selected and ordered the tracks for tb 8
  3. that the tracks I'd selected for tb 10 had some overlap with tb 8
  4. that there is an emotional trajectory across tbs 8, 9, & 10 if tbs 8 & 9 are switched
Practical meaning: none. I have to buy some tapes.

Monday, August 09, 2010

Meditation From an Image Dreamed Midflight

In Little Red Riding Hood, it's the wolf that's the star—the transvestite, the perfect impersonator, the grand actor that can betray his body and be a convincing simulacrum of any species. He is Fenrir, son of Loki, who can't be held by any traps. Far from having a boulder sewn into his belly and being borne to the bottom a lake (even the grim brothers knew the wolf is a thing that does not die), he left that cottage victorious, red cloak draped across his shoulders, a new skin on his face. Just as some tribes had tales of those who, by donning animal skins, could take the shape of that animal, the wolf wears his skins well. He's a better tailor than Ed Gein and will fit his form to the shape he has sewn. Right now, he is taking to the street in a little red cloak and the face of a coquette to lure all the hot-blooded little boys to him. The Big Bad Wolf is not a metaphor for a pederast, he is the warning against himself, the beast that will find you, get inside you, and consume you as you feel each bite until his teeth close on your small, hot heart. Then, that beast within you, wearing your face, will set out to eat again because a hunger for things like that can never be sated.

Monday, August 02, 2010

The graffiti read, "I was here." Below that, someone had added, "and, for a moment, I thought that was enough."