1001 Albums

A month in and my information diet is going well. I’m still fiddling with how Twitter fits, but otherwise I’m liking it a lot. One of the goals was to consume more “complete thoughts” like books, articles and music, and so far I’ve heavily leaned towards getting through my reading backlist.

Last week I subscribed to Rdio, the first real subscription music streaming service to hit Australia. And tonight, as I walked past the bookshelf, it occurred to me that I can do something that I’ve wanted to do for a long time but which has never been practical: listen to all the albums in 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

It’s a toss-up between music and reading for my first real hobby. I remember in early primary school converting Mum and Dad’s LPs to cassette so I could listen to them on my tape deck. As I teenager I spent an inordinate amount of time listening to borrowed, recorded, and (once I had a job) purchased albums. I’d spend hours reading the liner notes. Honestly, between music and books I don’t know when I found time for the important high school stuff like working, studying and drinking.

I still listen to music a lot, but mostly in the background while I’m working. On occasion I’ll make the time to really listen to an album, but it’s becoming more rare. And for the most part I’m not discovering a lot of new music (although I have found two of my top 10 bands in the last year or so). I’d like to change that.

With some notable exceptions, my musical knowledge is a mix of the 40s/50s/early 60s pop stuff my parents listened to, and 90s+ alt/metal. The 70s and 80s barely exist, and the rest isn’t really that well rounded. I mean, sure, I love Cash, and Bowie, Miles Davis and Pink Floyd get decent rotation time. But I’m missing a lot.

And that’s where 1001 Albums comes in. A mix of genres across 5 decades. I can’t wait! I’m already up to my 4th album for the night. If you want to follow what I’m listening to and what I think of it, head over to Twitter

As an aside, rdio has been flawless so far. It has had every album I’ve looked for, and other than some missing playlist/queuing stuff, the iPad app is very usable.

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