Saturday, December 31, 2016

December 31 - Meet On The Ledge

So the year is coming to an end, and I was able to keep the commitment to myself of posting at least one song a day - for 366 days (it was, after all, a leap year). I only repeated one song - and that was Fairport Convention's Now Be Thankful, which I believe could be played just about every day of the year, including today, New Year's Eve. Anyway... I have looked at the numbers for this last year, and for those of you who like statistics, you might enjoy hearing that I had 371 postings this year, featuring 227 different artists. I played 10 songs by Motorpsycho, 9 by U2, and 8 By David Bowie, which really represents three of my absolute favorite artists. But as much as I have been able to give you a good cross section of the music I like and listen to, there is so much more left.

But before I get there, I would like to spend a little bit of time reflecting on this past year. What I have done this past year has also really been to reflect on my life in general. It has sometimes been self indulgent, sometimes been a vehicle to show appreciation to important people in my life (and no, if I didn't show you appreciation, it doesn't mean that you aren't important, just that it wasn't your time yet). It has been cathartic for me at times - I have opened up about quite a few things that I hadn't talked too much about - sometimes even therapeutic. But most of all, it as allowed me to start believing in my writing again. The number of readers of this blog isn't huge, but it is steady, and I have really appreciated seeing the numbers change from day to day - especially on the days that I set personal records. On average, I would say that about 25-30 people may have read this, and to me, that is more than I expected. I was, after all, writing this for myself more than anything, and that some of you have at least found it interesting to listen to the music I have presented has been a great honor to me.

And then there are ripple effects. Because I develop a belief in both my writing and my ability to stick to it when I started, I decided to sign up for the National Novel Writing Month challenge. I can't say how long I have wanted to have written a novel - it has been something I have been dreaming of for years and years, but this year I did make it a reality. It is not a long novel, but it is a complete one, one that I look forward to start editing and refining, to see if there is something in there. But I did it.

2016 has been a year of great music, some pretty good movies, and some pretty good books. All of it is something I will be sure to cover once we hit 2017. Speaking of 2017, there will be more coming. I have plans for the new year, but I am not sure if I will keep the song a day up (although I suspect I will). What I do know already is that every Monday, there will be an album of the week. I won't play the entire album, but I will find a representative song from an album that really means something to me - and trust me, finding 52 albums isn't going to be a problem.

And then we have the great losses of 2016. We lost David Bowie. Prince. Leonard Cohen. George Michael. Carrie Fisher. And so many more. And we lost the soul of America.

And it is with those losses in mind that I decided to end this year on a hopeful note. A hope that we will keep on creating, keep on making music. It is a song that can be interpreted in many ways, but I look at it as a symbol of hope. It was also one of the very first songs Richard Thompson wrote, back when he was 17 years old, and it was Fairport Convention's second single ever, taken from the album What We Did On Our Holidays (1969). The song Meet On The Ledge seems like a great way to end 2016. Happy new year!

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