As this morning's post makes clear, I can get pretty anal about tracking what I listen to. Coincidentally, Nick Southall has appealed to anyone who'll participate to spend this week keeping a music diary. So of course I'm in. For this week only, I'm going to get even more detailed about my daily listening habits. If anything, it will show just how skewed my weekly Soundtrack posts are (since they only track albums I listen to from beginning to end). Here's how Monday shaped up:
6:35 am: I'm up when my alarm clock, aka Cooper, says it's time to get up. Knowing that the new Paul Simon, Low, and Panda Bear are all streaming on NPR this week, I head over and choose Simon's So Beautiful or So What to soundtrack breakfast and a little post-meal playing.
8:40 am: Running a little late for work I come out of the shower and hear snippets of Low's C'mon, also streaming from NPR, which my wife put on. I've been looking forward to hearing this and was l looking forward to hearing it in full once I got settled into work. Hearing snippets of a couple tracks feels slightly like I'm spoiling the record.
8:48 am: I'm out the door, iPod on, walking to work: Low, Drums and Guns. I'd already had it in my head that I'd listen to this on my walk, in anticipation of hearing the new one. I arrive to work at track 10, "Your Poison." After ten minutes of getting settled in, I put the headphones back in and finish the last three songs while catching up on email and work twitter in my office. The last three tracks are, after all, the best three tracks.
- Low: Your Poison
10:20 am: Low, C'mon, while working. I make it through five songs before being interrupted—I'm getting a new computer at work. Once it's all set up—it takes about 30 minutes—I head back to NPR, plug in my headphones, and start the album over again. Only the sound is blaring out of the computer speakers as if my headphones aren't plugged in. This won't do; my plans for listening to Low and Panda Bear all day are foiled. I go music-less for a bit.
12:10 pm: Over the weekend I'd downloaded a couple of playlists from Singing the Wire, plus a few Merle Haggard tracks from the Adios Lounge. I dumped them all into one playlist and hit play. I make it through Sir Douglas Quintet's "Texas Me," Billy Joe Shaver's "Honky Tonk Heroes," Jerry Jeff Walker's "Sangria Wine," Kris Kristofferson's "From the Bottle to the Bottom," and Ray Wylie Hubbard's "(Up Against the Wall) Redneck Mother" before being interrupted.
- Kris Kristofferson: From The Bottle To The Bottom
1:14 pm: I need to write, so I put on my "Writing" playlist—all instrumental, mostly ambient/electronic/krautrock—and hit shuffle: Icebreaker International's "Phillipine Sea," Chopin's "Nocture #4 in F," Holy Fuck's "1MD," Neu!'s "Hallogallo," Brise-Glace's "Stump of a Downer," Cluster's "Umleitung," and Manuel Göttsching's epic "Echo Waves."
- Icebreaker International: Philippine Sea
2:22 pm: When Tortoise's "The Lithium Stiffs" comes on, I decide to listen to It's All Around You in full. I'm about to segue into Beacons of Ancestorship but I only make it through "High Class Slim Came Floating In" before being interrupted.
- Tortoise: The Lithium Stiffs
4:48 pm: Looking for nothing special while I do some near-the-end-of-day emailing, I set my "Top Rated" playlist to shuffle: The Shins' "Gone for Good," Neil Young's "Birds," Sufjan Stevens' "Come On! Feel the Illinoise!" and the Futureheads' "The Return of the Berserker." Interrupted.
5:28 pm: Heading home, this time on the bus instead of walking. I return to my country playlist. "Sangria Wine," "(Up Against the Wall) Redneck Mother" and "Texas Me" all repeat, along with Great Speckled Bird's "Calgary," the Monkees' "Sunny Girlfriend," Merle Haggard's "I'm Gonna Break Every Heart I Can," and Little Feat's "Willin'."
5:55 pm: I walk in the front door just as Sam Prekop's "So Shy" comes on. My brilliant wife and I start dancing and singing along with Prekop's "Hey / Ba-da-ba-pa," trying to get Cooper to dance too. He didn't dance but it was fun anyway. "So Shy" is the last song on Prekop's self-titled album so the iTunes library flowed right into Who's Your New Professor as we went through the evening routine of detoxing from a long day, giving Coop a bath, and getting him ready for bed. Eventually the iTunes library keeps chugging along: more country with Sammi Smith ("Help Me Make it Through the Night," "Today I Started Loving You Again," "Kentucky"), reggae with Sammy Dread ("Road Block"), and an awful cover of "Louie Louie" by the Sandpipers.
- Sam Prekop: So Shy
7:25 pm: Back to NPR, I finally put on the new Panda Bear album. But I only make it through two songs before we decide to make dinner instead. The rest of the night carries on without returning to the play button.