Pop Art Chat: Music

During the decades, like most people, I developed a love for music.  I like various kinds of music but my favorites are: rock, orchestral music and pop music.

Here are some of my favorites:

In the English language rock category I have to mention U2 and Rush.  While I confess to not being as intense of a their fan as I was when I was an adolescent both these bands have produced music that I truly really like during the past 5 years, even though I became a fan way way back in the 1980s.

German language rock category: Kraft Klub

English language metal-rock: I know this is old news, but Disturbed and Godsmack are my favorite 21st century newly discovered metal bands.  I’m not a metal head either; at least, I don’t think of myself that way.  In truth, I’m not sure that any of the band’s members are either but that’s what they do that seems to bring them in the most money.  It may or may not be what any of them like the best.

Symphonic / Classical – Instrumental

Amazing as it is, I have heard of and even own some of Yo Yo Ma.

Another one of my favorites is the adult daughter protégé of a famous Indian sitar player Ravi Shankar: Anoushka Shankar.

At this point, I wish to point out 2 other musicians specialized in one instrument as their expertise that I particularly like:  neither are American.  I have no idea of whether or not they speak much of any English but as their works are purely instrumental it doesn’t matter so much:  Mitsuko Uchida’s Schubert Piano Sonatas, and Nikolaj Znaider‘s Bravo!

For classical symphonic music, I am fond of Mozart and Beethoven, possibly the most.  Normally, however common my senses are, I tend to trust the major urban philharmonic orchestras to competently play the music of those composers to my satisfaction.

General Information

I’ve always loved music, and like most of my generation grew up listening to a lot of radio broadcasts.  My father made sure I heard plenty of classical music, and my sister preferred classical and folk music.  I have fairly broad tastes, but due to the thematic genre nature of commercial radio stations and my generation I mostly listened to forms of rock-n-roll.

Of the old stuff, I do appreciate Chuck Berry and Elvis Presley.  I love the work that Cream did in just 2 years; I admire The Doors, Led Zeppelin and Jimmy Hendrix.  I liked lots more than those, including, of course, The Beatles (that should just go without saying; that’s how great they were.  In all seriousness, I loved them and even like the Monkeys/Monkees).

Of newer old stuff:  Eurythmics, Annie Lennox, David Bowie.  I got into that Flock of Seagulls song, and enjoyed a high volume of “one hit wonders” throughout the years.  I loved the B52s and even the Go Go Girls.  As a grown woman I learned to enjoy Peter Murphy and the Cure.  I even like Elvis Costello and the Talking Heads. Oasis is one of the few 90s bands that I managed to notice.

Like everyone else, there have been so many more bands who put out at least some song or two that I liked but this gives you a good general idea.

This is mainly opinion and is just sharing some of my musical preferences with you all.  You can decide how much or how little that tells you about me.

German Stereotypes

Kraft Klub (German band)

For foreigners

Germans are well aware that foreigners have tendencies to see them in certain ways.  Which region of the world they are dealing with has some influence of how they are seen.

They know that people to the West of Germany, especially French and English speaking peoples tend to jump to certain conclusions.  Some right, others wrong.

  1.  Germans are frightening powerful yet unpleasant and speak a difficult language that native speakers of English wouldn’t wish upon their worst enemies….except maybe the Germans (ha ha ?)
  2.  NaZi ism.  This is related to item #1, but also involves the perpetuation in the USA at least where there are very old Jewish people who’s native language is either German or Polish, who have American grandchildren.  They moved due to the NaZi Party.

3. Still related: in the USA for propaganda reasons, the vast majority of information        that Americans get about the Germans and the German language is WW2 re-runs.  Due to this most Americans only know a few German words they learned while watching WW2 related documentaries or TV shows or movies.

4.  Frau und frauline:  Germany is full of happy, blonde women with large breasts who serve beer for a living, at least until they get married and have children.

There are people who have a more current image of Germany.  In 2012 it was rated the most popular European country, internationally.

True Stuff about Germans

They can be rather serious, mostly because the Summer is not that warm and people can be hard.   German is not that easy to speak but when German there is no choice if one hopes to get anywhere in life.

Germans do tend to be proud but sometimes also uniquely sensitive.  They know that if they were not so great and powerful they would not be and have been so dominant in Europe both in peace time and in war time.  They know that both North American nations and the Russians viewed them as “the Villain” in 2 world wars.  Because of what they have been through as a people, they also feel that the nation degenerated to having been a menace for awhile….but Germans and what is Germany is really much more complicated….Given that the modern “German state” is about 120 years old, but there have been German speaking people living in the same region for 2000 years and more.  In fact, the “First Reich” really was 1000 years of Germany being a Catholic Empire and simultaneously the remainder of the Western Roman Empire.  *Personally, despite having learned this I find it hard to break through the American-Hollywood images of the Romans and of the Germans to accept this basic truth.

Germans have poor sense of humor.  Well, they don’t have the gentlest or most consistent senses of humor but I can assure you that they are less likely to laugh at jokes in English when travelling outside of Germany and dealing with using their “holiday English”.   I’m sure there are numerous incidents in which some German didn’t get the joke.

administration architecture berlin building

Photo by Ingo Joseph on Pexels.com

Especially for College Students

Wild Undergraduates

Are you a college student?

Wondering what to get your friends or yourself for the holidays?  Maybe you would like buy someone you like or love something, but don’t want to spend much.

If you, and any of your friends are college students who have Kindles and love to read, have I got good news for you.

Here is a great little set of short fiction stories for just $0.99! :   The Future of Engineering

What’s Special About Them?

You are probably wondering.  Every story in The Future of Engineering collection is about college students.  Starring college students.  Set on university campuses.

These stories are so good, that you may want to get yourself a copy, at $0.99 there’re at a price it’s tough to beat.

Genre and plot line:  diverse:  1 is about a goddess-project; 1 is a comedy story about advanced engineering research and an old saying.  1 is about whether or not anyone died of an overdose of fun the night before.

Nevertheless, these were written by me, when I was a college student during my mid-20s, and everything about them is especially designed for this niche market.

If you do it to buy something for your friends or that sibling who is in college, that’s great.

If you do it because you love yourself…All I can tell you is that I hope your self-love is the healthy kind, rather than narcissism.

Rush Fan Speaks

The truth is that the Canadian rock band Rush is the same as that I am, and wow, that’s really not young anymore.

An older fan brought to one of their gigs.  It was the 1980s and the older one, had become a fan in the 1970s.

Recently online, I saw some new fans, 21st century teen fans mostly.  Some people’s kids like the band and become fans in their own right.  Once one gets to know what is going on, people can learn more about how to gauge a fan’s age group if it is not immediately obvious, by asking which album made them a fan.  Despite being a very unusual person in some respects, I became a fan with their best selling album/cd of the 1980s Moving Pictures “just like everybody else”.

One fun thing about being a fan of such a long time band, is that one can stick with it for decades or can even go away from them for a while and then come back, refreshed by how they have changed their sound etc..

Rush fan site

Neil, Neil Neil