A short while ago me and the good lady wife went stateside to the large Apple, New York New York New York so good I named it thrice.
Umm anyway while milling about in the airport on the return leg of our journey I purchased a book on whim, Juliet Naked by Nick Hornby. I had read some of his others, namely About a Boy and of course High fidelity and this one is also about music (and the naked bit hinted at sexy times)
This isn’t strictly a review of the book, more a review of how the book has given me a bit of a kick in the arse.
Centred around a cult musician called Tucker Crowe and the effect his music has on people, specifically the titular Juliet and its sister album Juliet, naked with the online and obsessive.
It has been a long time since a book has resonated so deeply with me; maybe even since Catcher in the Rye a book that I thought was earth shattering upon reading it for the first time high school.
Now I am not comparing Juliet to Catcher that would be a very Duncanesque error to rush in and declare this to be the greatest book ever written.
But it has gotten under my skin, I have read it twice since first picking it up and inbetween readings I couldn’t finish anything else, I just couldn’t get it all out of my mind and not finishing books isn’t me at all.
I saw a lot of me in Duncan, one of the main characters a Crowe obsessive and a pretentious music snob, and I didn’t like it.
You can’t “win” at music, being passionate about music is one thing, rubbishing and looking down on others tastes is something entirely different.
I listen to a lot of post-hardcore and of late post-rock, my sister is going to see RnB star Rhianna while I am going to see trail of dead.
This doesn’t make me better than her (I am but that’s a different story)
I wrote a rather large piece for use on here yesterday about music, the intention was to try and explore if something being obscure made it better than something being popular and if selling millions worldwide erodes any artistic merit in your work.
In one part I compared Simon Cowell to Hitler. It was a massive pile of snobby pretentious wank, so I deleted the lot and (hopefully) took another step towards bringing a better me into the world.
Musical top trumps is a game that even if you win you end up being a loser.
Enjoy what you like, share it with others but don’t ram it down their throats. Just because you have all the B-sides, countless live bootlegs and demos doesn’t make you special or a bigger fan.
Music is an individual thing don’t sully it by being a wanker
Jesus I have turned into Jerry Springer.
I’ll end with this, what I think is one the most beautiful pieces of music I have heard in a long while