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We re-discovered an old box of vinyl records this weekend.

The selection used to be owned (and I’m sure thoroughly enjoyed) by J’s mom & dad. And let me tell you, it doesn’t disappoint. What’s more, I think it’s only half of the total vinyl awesomeness that once was. The picks are a lot of 70s and 80s, and includes bands and artists I know well and others I have no clue of. Thank you, YouTube.

What I’ve learned about this time in music is, well, a few things. For one, drugs are amazing and awful. The clothes, the hair, the band names,and the album and song titles. Second, duos and trios rule. Or maybe these decades just had an affection for the ampersand. Hall & Oates. Chad & Jeremy. Crosby, Stills and Nash. Ike & Tina.  Loggins & Messina. Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass.

And lastly, and this is a no-brainer: Mustaches rule. Peruse (and enjoy) the awesome evidence of ‘staches:

I’ve been in a writing standstill. Eh, handstill.

But I’ve figured out why. I’ve been in a music rut. I haven’t changed out my (OK, I might date myself now …) cd case in months, and (OK, I’m not totally against technology …) I haven’t updated my iPod in weeks (OK, I kind of hate iTunes). Finally, though, I’m starting to break out and perk up. JP got me the new Beastie Boys album last week, Hot Sauce Committee Part Two. I know people say they hate it when an artist doesn’t try new stuff and stretch their musical talents. But how awesome is it when they stick to what they kick ass at and just kick ass!?

Also starting to catch up on my music podcasts. My go-to is the 538 Dance Department podcast, because I love the Dutch accent of the host and because I love house music. Anywho, caught a set by Eric Prydz that surprised me in a good way. I love when I’m not paying attention and then catch the late thought train, ‘I didn’t think I was much of a fan, but I really like this.’

And so I’ll leave you with a new tune you can groove to … this one is from Santigold featuring the awesome Karen O, Go:

Last weekend we made our way to Miami. Caribbean Festival. Bob Marley Festival. Whatever you used to call it, it’s now the Nine Mile Music Festival. Despite the name change, the game is still the same: one love, reggae, Jah.

The main attraction is always seeing some of the Marleys on stage, and this year was no exception. Kymani Marley teamed up with a reggae upcoming star, Proteje, and then Stephen, Julian & Damien Marley joined forces on the stage to close it down. Amazing! But, I have to admit, I was really excited to see some of the unusual reggae festival players. Namely, Major Lazer and Thievery Corporation. Since it also happened to be the week of the Winter Music Conference in Miami, these turntable guys were in town and a nice addition to the 9 Mile lineup — for me, anyway 🙂

Inner Circle

Kymani Marley

Stephen, Julian & Damien Marley

I can’t believe how much money I’ve spent on cds. Yes, compact discs.

So futuristic. So round. So awesome. I love everything about a new cd. The cover art. The art of getting the label sticker off to open the case. Would there be lyrics included? That’s always a bonus. Who would the artist thank? What producers stepped in and on what tracks and where did they use a sample? I have spent so many hours (and dollars!) in music stores — Blockbuster music, Uncle Sam’s, FYE. I would search for cds with B-sides; cds with live versions; cds imported from other countries (my fave!); cds with bonus tracks; cds with remixes. New cds, used cds. I loved them all.

Nobody can say I didn’t do my part to help keep the cd industry alive throughout the 90s.

But then along came the devil, eh, I mean Steve Jobs, er, I mean, Apple, oh yeah, and the iPod. And so it seems, the death of cd sales.

Will scrolling through iTunes be the only way the youngest generation knows how to ‘shop’ for music? Ugh. Someone bring me a cassette tape player, stat, I need to make a mix tape that conveys how I feel.

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