Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Grace On My Desert Island

One week ago, Tuesday was the 10th anniversary of the death of Jeff Buckley. I think it odd sometimes, that we commemorate the days when luminaries die. These are "deathdays", but for luminaries such as Jeff Buckley, they may well mark the day when a glimmering star is transformed into a bright shining one. There is nothing quite so intriguing as star quality dimmed by death...a la Janis Joplin, Elliott Smith, Jimi Hendrix... then re-ignited by popular opinion. But for his part, I think Jeff Buckley's brilliance is brilliance regardless of his tragic fate (as it is with those others mentioned). It has been said that Grace is one of the greatest albums of the the last 25 years. I would heartily agree. After all, we did name our dog after Mr. Buckley (Jeff...not William F. just to clear up any confusion). Grace has changed my life - that statement is multi-layered by intention. The album by that title would most certainly be on my "desert island" list.

If your "Oceanic flight 815" were to crash on an island, what would you bring?

I find "favorites" lists to be difficult to concoct. After all, particularly in the realm of music, different situations call for different tunes. Perhaps the following metaphors will help you to focus in on your musical "must-haves". Back to my desert island, methinks that in addition to Grace I'd hope for a few cheerier albums to soothe my ears on those hot, sandy, palm tree days of entrapment...think the Bob Marley Legend compilation or Jack Johnson's Brushfire Fairytales - those are island records.

Had that same plane crashed and stranded me in London's Covent Garden, I would want David Gray's White Ladder. Trapped forever to walk the streets of Paris, I'd want Thievery Corporation's Mirror Conspiracy. If by some stretch I were locked in an old Ford truck to traverse the country back and forth I'd want Lyle Lovett's Road To Ensenada, or anything by Sonvolt...and smalltown AM radio. Locked up for good in an emotionless, gray-walled office or cubicle...I'd opt for Poses by Rufus Wainwright. He makes all things sad and beautiful. If the gods of exercise chained me to a treadmill for eternity I may actually be able to go forever listening to DJ Sasha's Involver.

If my plane crashed into a place where it was always rainy, I would wish Starflyer 59's Fashion Focus to be my soundtrack. And trapped just about anywhere I could listen to Beck's Sea Change or the Indigo Girls Swamp Ophelia over and over again.

I could go on....
But when, by Grace, I am gloriously hemmed in behind the gates of heaven forever, I do believe God will be playing Sigur Ros.


Anonymous said...

I could listen to some Portishead - Dummy quite a few times over and over if in the right mood.


Matt said...

Great topic Katie. Perhaps I'll elaborate for a post of my own (it's about time I posted something again) but off the top of my head I'd say: The Beatles White Album, Son Volt: Trace, Paul Simon: Graceland, and Bob Dylan: Blood on the Tracks.

Some more recent albums that will most likely stand the test of time are The Decemberists: The Crane Wife, Wilco: Sky Blue Sky (I know it just came out, but it's great), and anything by Iron & Wine or Sufjan.

Hmm...I'll have to give this some more thought...

unruined said...

hi Katie!! :) -greg
to limit things a bit: 10 metal albums within the past 10 years:
>Opeth - My Arms, Your Hearse
>The Sword - Age of Winters
>DragonForce - Valley of the Damned
>Therion - Secret of the Runes
>Nile - Annihilation of the Wicked
>As I Lay Dying - Shadows are Security
>Therion - Gothic Kabbalah
>Blind Guardian - Nightfall in Middle Earth
>Symphony X -- Prelude to the Millennium
>Amorhpis - Eclipse

Thomas said...

Hi Katie, I heard recently a "live at the Olympia" concert from Jeff Buckley: impressive and emoving...
Damien Rice too is an excellent artist and his album "O" was excellent...