Christmas is just a scant two days away and as usual, I keep telling myself that I must start shopping earlier – like maybe on December 20th. I intended to make this a Christmas Musing, but life got in the way and the Musing didn’t happen when I had hoped. Since this is a week late, my blog host told me I could just work the rest of the year without pay. Yikes! Guess I had better get to writing.
As we approach the end of the year, we tend to reflect on the past year, and musically it is no different. On a broad scope, 2016 will be remembered as the year the music world lost several icons. January came in like a storm with the deaths of Glenn Frey (Eagles) and David Bowie. While I’ve never been a big Bowie fan, his impact on the music world isn’t lost on me.
When Gary Richrath died in 2015, I realized that the time was approaching when a lot of the musicians I grew up with would soon start passing. I guess that is why Glenn Frey’s death hit me hard. The Eagles’ Hotel California was the first “rock” album I ever purchased. It was the finality that one of the greatest bands would never be whole again – Don Henley pronounced the death of the Eagles with the passing of Frey.
As the year progressed we lost even more – Leon Russell, Leonard Cohen, Prince, Merle Haggard, Greg Lake and several more. The tribute section of the Grammys will be long this time. What’s the lesson? I guess it would be to go ahead and see that group or musician when they come around – because you never know.
On the positive side, 2016 was a great year musically for me. I got the privilege of seeing several shows and checked a couple of “I’ve never seen them” artists off my list.
Leading the “never have seen them” list was Pat Benatar and Meat Loaf, in addition to Sheryl Crow. I would put Meat Loaf in the “better hurry” category. Another first was attending one of the stadium shows at Fan Fair (CMA Fest) after all these years. Two words sum up that show for me – Miranda, spurs. ‘Nuff said.
In the old favorites category were Cheap Trick, Heart, Styx (with the Nashville Symphony), and John Waite. Waite was my favorite small show in the intimate Franklin Theatre while the Styx/symphony show was the favorite “large” show. While on different ends of the spectrum, they both blew me away. As for the Heart show – I learned that Nancy Wilson can still kick her leg waaayyyy above her head.
Even though I don’t get compensation from Apple, another positive for me was Apple Music. It enabled me to listen to Leon Russell or Leonard Cohen songs – when I wouldn’t have otherwise. I typically use it for looking back – in 2017, I need to use it to look forward and discover new music. This would definitely please my wife and children who uttered probably the comment of the year on a long trip where I was in charge of the music – “we’ve haven’t heard anything past 1990 in the last three hours.” Ouch.
In closing, I want to thank my regular readers for letting me invade their cyberspace every couple of weeks. As you know, I run the gamut from serious to humor. I love music and writing about it and I will continue assuming that you anxiously wait for the next installment of Music Musings. Also thanks to my blog host and great friend, Barry, for providing this outlet to me.
As we stand on the edge of ’17 (see what I did there?), I hope you will continue reading and wish you nothing but the best.