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#103416 - 07/07/05 04:23 AM Rediscovering music
St_PatGuy Offline
axiomite

Registered: 03/07/05
Posts: 7400
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
Sometimes I wish I was young with a limited budget. Those were the times I had a handful of CDs that I listened to over and over again. And the ones that didn't grab me at first, I learned to like because I had few choices and a yen for variety. These albums I listened to and learned to pull little tidbits here and there that appealed to me. I worked and learned to like these songs.

Time goes on. Tastes change, budget grows, and cd collection flourishes. At times I think this is a detriment. Gone is the time I devoted to album listening, trying to pull some connecting factor out of the music. Not that I don't enjoy music anymore. On the contrary, my enjoyment and appreciativeness has increased greatly. The part that bums me out is that I'm not often "wowed" anymore. In the end, I have learned a few key things about my listening habits.

1. Some albums I instantly like. For some elusive reason, though, I'm wary when drawn to an album right away. It's like crack. I listen to it constantly, developing an insatiable appetite for it, humming along with it, singing along with it, thinking about it when I'm not listening to it. And then *poof* the honeymoon's over. I'm bored. No longer is the magic maintained. These cds get shelved and start collecting dust.

2. Some albums are just kinda "blah." They don't take many chances, don't do much wrong, don't do much right--just occupy some sort of musical middleground. These are safe albums that don't call attention to themselves. They too get shelved, but are played sporadically when I can't make up my mind for something else.

3. Rock-solid standards. These are the cds that usually get scratched. Not because of neglect, but instead, too much use. These are the "Beatles'," the "Stones'" the "Holliday's," the "Cash's," the "Vaughn's," the "Rachmaninoff's," or the what-have-you's of our collections. The classics we can always turn to for that goosebump factor. Ones we hope we never tire of because we'd have to give up a part of ourselves to never listen to again. These are the ones we use to show off our system because we know they won't fail to please.

4. And finally, the diamonds-in-the-rough. These are my favorite albums. Upon first listen they occupy the "blah" category. But there is some "thing," some tiny spark that gets planted and makes me grab for the cd again. I say to myself, "I know there is more to this album. I need to give it a chance." These albums reward my with multiple listens. It's like they hide all the good stuff and make me search for it. Ah, but there is method behind this madness. These albums I invest a sort of emotional attachment to. They almost reach the "rock-solid standard" status, but rarely do I let others onto my little gem. After all, it is something I learned to like, something I put the time into to glean a "connection" out of. These are ones I hesitate to recommend to others because I know it would kill me if others couldn't find the same enjoyment out of it that I did. But that is rather selfish thinking because everyone has different tastes.

I'm afraid my insatiable appetite for music will never end. I'm constantly trying new albums in hopes that I find the next "diamond-in-the-rough." Often, it is a disheartening journey--there is a lot of "blah" music out there. On the other hand, it is constantly rewarding--exposure to a myriad of sounds, and maybe challenging or expanding my taste in music. Sometimes I worry that I don't devote enough time to albums anymore, I don't give them a chance to grow on me. Let's face it though, I'm not a kid anymore. I have many more priorities in life and many other things that demand my attention.

Okay, it's late and I'm rambling. I don't remember the original intent behind this post.

Oh yeah--What kind of listening experiences do you guys have? Am I the only weird one who over-analyzes things? Anyone scared to count his/her music collection in fear of doing the math and figuring out how much money you've spent on everything?
_________________________
***********
"Nothin' up my sleeve. . ." --Bullwinkle J. Moose

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#103417 - 07/07/05 08:47 AM Re: Rediscovering music
F107plus5 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/24/05
Posts: 2034
Loc: Fla. Orig. Mich.
I used to critically listen to and enjoy music back in the good ol' days when I had quality speakers in a reasonably good listening room; but now, in a less than ideal listening area with sub-par main speakers, the fun is gone.

However; when I get my M3s up and running with tubes in the dining room system......

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#103418 - 07/07/05 12:24 PM Re: Rediscovering music
F107plus5 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/24/05
Posts: 2034
Loc: Fla. Orig. Mich.
Oh Wow!! did my previous post come out all wrong!My current mains are great speakers "in my opinion!" My listening space needs a lot of help to be made "listenable" on those rare ocassions when I get the oportunity to "just listen"!

When I first got my M3s a few years back; I found that I had a whole "new" CD collection! Some good ones now sounded bad and some bad ones now sounded good. But most sounded "good"!!

It was wierd.

I found it a real hoot to just sit and point at the instruments where they floated in my room. I could almost pick out the colors of the outfits worn by the back-up singers!

I find that I often times will listen to a CD with material I don't much care for if it has a particularily well recorded track or two, just to pick out the good stuff.(In that respect, you'd think I should have been drawn more to the M60s!)

I did find, however, that what I listen to has something to do with the speakers I'm listening to at the time.

When I have the main room set-up for listening(the rug on the fireplace, towels on the walls, speakers moved out from their cabinets, the furniature rearranged)I tend to listen to more "Big" music on the floorstanders than I did on the M3s. While when I listen to tunes on the more intimate dining room system with bookshelf speakers, I tend to stick more with small groups and other "smaller" sounds.(I can't wait to get M3s and tubes out there!!)

Movie DVDs have gone a long way to stall my CD collection pretty much where it is. This has much to do with WAF: The others in the house have discovered the importance of good sounds, but they are much more involved in the sounds generated by the flicks! Thankfully a large percentage of the current releases of DVDs have glorious soundtracks!!

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#103419 - 07/07/05 08:33 PM Re: Rediscovering music
DOUBTINGTHOMAS29 Offline
veteran

Registered: 11/12/04
Posts: 164
I pretty much felt the way you did prior to purchasing a turntable. I now enjoy listening to Fleetwood Mac and Pink Floyd the way they actually intended us to hear them. I enjoy going to the record store and browsing through the used records and finding a Steely Dan Aja lp for $2.00. Finally, I enjoy sharing the music with my wife who finally enjoys listening to music. Prior to getting my turntable my wife could care less about music. Now we kick back, open a bottle of wine and listen to music. I had forgotten how great music listening could be. In addition, she pretty much green lights all of my audio equipment upgrades!

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#103420 - 07/07/05 08:59 PM Re: Rediscovering music
St_PatGuy Offline
axiomite

Registered: 03/07/05
Posts: 7400
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
F107, it really is fun going through old cds again with new speakers. Easy to recognize differences in how the sound is presented. Kinda fun and exciting to hear something new in that old recording you've heard hundreds of times before.

I need to buy another bookshelf before I get any more DVDs . I love all kinds of movies--from the silent era on, but I find myself buying more DVDs that will give my sub a work out. I even bought a couple of crappy movies just because the sound is good! Madness, I tell you.
_________________________
***********
"Nothin' up my sleeve. . ." --Bullwinkle J. Moose

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#103421 - 07/07/05 09:07 PM Re: Rediscovering music
St_PatGuy Offline
axiomite

Registered: 03/07/05
Posts: 7400
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
Oh no! You said, "turntable." I have long avoided looking into turntables, because I have other things to spend my money on--you know, like food and gas . Finding the right combo for pleasureable music playback is priceless. And to think, you even got your wife to enjoy it, too! I know a lot of people who'd be jealous of you. . .
_________________________
***********
"Nothin' up my sleeve. . ." --Bullwinkle J. Moose

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#103422 - 07/08/05 05:30 PM Re: Rediscovering music
DOUBTINGTHOMAS29 Offline
veteran

Registered: 11/12/04
Posts: 164
Do yourself a favor and eat ramen noodles for a few weeks and purchase a turntable. You won't be sorry. Since my wife began listening to vinyl I've upgraded my turntable, cartridge and purchased a 2-channel NAD integrated amp with no questions asked. I love vinyl!

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#103423 - 07/09/05 01:14 AM Re: Rediscovering music
St_PatGuy Offline
axiomite

Registered: 03/07/05
Posts: 7400
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
In reply to:

Do yourself a favor and eat ramen noodles for a few weeks and purchase a turntable




La la la (puts fingers in ears) la la la. Nope not listening to you! La la la. . .



_________________________
***********
"Nothin' up my sleeve. . ." --Bullwinkle J. Moose

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