Steve’s post on his favourite music of 2011 prompted me to think about what I was bouncing off my eardrums during 2011. Fortunately, I manage to scrobble most of what I listen to so I can turn to my Last.fm profile for a crib sheet.
Out of the top 15 artists from the last 12 months, the only artist new to the list is Gov’t Mule, whose By a Thread album was given to me for my birthday. I have listened to other artists new to me as well I do like to delve back into my existing collection and appreciate what I have as well as exploring different sounds. That tendency tends to cloud the statistics and I have to reach back to #48 for the next new item.
That is music by Renaud García-Fons, who I think I discovered via Spotify while searching through a chain of double bassists from someone more familiar to me (who that was, I can’t remember at all). It was enough to push him onto my Christmas list and the 18 plays recorded don’t reflect the number of times I have listened to this in the car or on my parents’ CD player nor, oddly enough, the first listen which was enough to inspire me. It is a fantastic blend of influences from Southern Europe and North Africa and I expect to listen to it quite a few times in the coming months.
If I want to make this job easier next year, I need to do that with all the new music I discover. There were other fresh things I enjoyed (digging back, I can see that Lobelia’s Beautifully Undone album, with several tracks that I span enough to make my top tracks list, only first hit my charts earlier this year) but the overall volume makes it hard to pick out patterns and good music blends into the wider tapestry of my past like threads of gold.