What are you listening to?

A couple of weeks ago I saw Ben Folds, Rufus Wainwright and Guster in concert. Ben Folds is a longstanding love affair of mine, I never, ever tire of listening to any of his (both Ben Folds Five and solo) CDs, and with the exception of maybe one or two songs, I never skip a song on any of his CDs either. I missed him the last time he came around Connecticut because Monkey and I were at Disneyworld, so I was not going to miss him this time. He delivered, as usual - huge energy, very funny, gonzo piano playing, audience participation - he is definitely an artist who must be seen live to be fully appreciated.

I was only familiar with a couple of songs by Guster, and I had only heard Rufus Wainwright's cover of Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah.

Guster was a pretty tight band, with great vocals, but since I wasn't too familiar with their songs it was hard to get into it. Their drummer plays mostly hand drums, which was kind of cool.

Rufus Wainwright was sort of fascinating. He has massive stage presence, and he's very funny, but his music was so mellow it was like we were being lulled to sleep. He also mumbles, so I couldn't understand what he was singing. But the melodies were so beautiful I decided I would have to check him out.

So I bought his CD Want One, and there is a lot to like. The first song on the CD (I think it's called "What A World") is built on the melody from Ravel's Bolero. Right now, my other favorite song is "Vibrate"

My phone's on vibrate for you.
Electroclash is karaoke, too.
I tried to dance to Britney Spears,
I guess I'm getting on in years

The music underneath is similar to the bass line of that famous song from the opera Carmen (sorry, not hugely into opera so I have no idea what that is - for people from my era who are reading this, you would recognize the bass line from a filmed bit on Sesame Street where an orange gets all gussied up and sings "l'amour").

I will still listen to something more upbeat on my way into work (One Angry Dwarf and 200 Solemn Faces makes for an uplifting start to my day), but I am intrigued by the work of Mr. Wainwright and would like to subscribe to his newsletter.

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