1. For the first time, I’ve been contacted by an artist whose work I’ve mentioned in this here blog. Fortunately, it was someone who got a positive review, and the person was as down-to-earth and flat-out nice as I could’ve hoped.
2. I’m becoming a Rachael Yamagata fan. The playful 1963 is climbing into the Top 20 on my iPod and will likely reach the Top 10. I bumped her up to 100 on my Launch station and found a couple more songs worthy of my 99 cents. She sounds a lot like Fiona Apple and shares the same problem — her slower songs drag. But Apple rarely, if ever, records any midtempo or uptempo songs as engaging as Yamagata’s. Like Apple and a few other female piano-based vocalists (Norah Jones, even Tori Amos at times), Yamagata has distinct jazz influences, and she sings with a sultry voice. On 1963, at least, she does it better than the others. She could probably sing the phone book and make it sound sexy. Fortunately, she’s a better songwriter than that.
3. Speaking of my Launch station — why do tech geeks drool over every online musical offering except this one? My Launch station is interactive in the sense that I can rate songs and artists I want to hear more often, and it’s “social” like deli.cio.us and all those other shared bookmarking sites that probably make sense to 15-year-olds but make little sense to me. If it were owned by Goooogle instead of Yahoo, you know the self-anointed hipsters would be all over it.
And finally some slam-book silliness for you (I hate the word “meme”):
Accent: Slightly Southern. Slight enough that it surprises people to hear I’m from Georgia.
Booze: Killian’s, Bass, various other pretentious beers in moderation. Occasionally wine.
Chore I Hate: Weeding. I spend 15 minutes in a painful crouch, then look back and find that they’ve all grown back.
Dog or Cat: One good dog, but I grew up with both. In fact, I had a dog and a cat as recently as 2002.
Essential Electronics: Computer, TV with digital cable.
Favorite Cologne(s): I’m more of a Borussia Moenchengladbach fan.
Gold or Silver: White gold.
Hometown: Same as Keith from the B-52s.
Insomnia: On occasion.
Job Title: Special Projects Editor. For all the sense that makes.
Living arrangements: 2,800-square-foot two-level split-foyer house.
Most admirable trait: Willingness to do thankless jobs that sink my career.
Number of sexual partners: Let’s put it this way. I figured out high school dating after I graduated. I figured out college dating after I graduated from there. I figured out adult dating … well, never. It’s a miracle that I reproduced.
Overnight hospital stays: None, unless you include being a spectator at delivery.
Phobias: Idiots and/or fanatics with access to weapons.
Quote: “Everything I say is a lie. Except that. And that. And that. And that. And that. And that.” – Peter Griffin
Siblings: Three older half-siblings
Time I wake up: 6:45 a.m. 7 a.m. 7:10 a.m. 7:25 a.m.
Unusual talent or skill: Coin-snatching.
Vegetable I refuse to eat: Brussel sprouts, most mushrooms, asparagus, artichokes.
Worst habit: Empty calories, though I’m getting better about my soda intake.
X-rays: Three broken fingers (all at different times). Teeth.
Yummy foods I make: Chili — the secret is yellow bell pepper to add a subtle sweetness. I’m also pretty good at stir-frying. I also do corn on the grill, occasionally with success.
Zodiac sign: Aries.