This is my LA mixtape.
Last year I came down to LA and didn’t know anything but wow, I learned. This time I found a tepid response; old friends couldn’t or wouldn’t make time, old connections dried up, some generosities were grandfathered in as courtesies. In one year I went from a novelty to someone who had overstayed many welcomes.
And it was all fine. I found new, deeper connections. My roommates, all 5 of them, plus our transient visitors, formed the bedrock of my social life. Some old friends returned, valiant and dependable as ever. The new friends started as peers and, on instinct, helped look out for me when I felt lost.
The whole story is in the music I gravitated towards while I was here. Between the long hours lost to the freeways and sitting in coffee shops, or picking my way through Big Sur, or blasting past central California farmland, I found things that honestly mirrored what I was feeling, which wasn’t always easy to pin down. Joy, confusion, nostalgia, bitterness, desolation, anticipation, and maybe some feelings that aren’t so easily defined.
Being open to the experience is my goal in life. Finding new songs is a thrill for me, up there with getting a really good cup of coffee. Some of these are newly-found old songs. Time to let them say all the things I can’t.
Stephen Malkmus - Lariat
Violent Femmes - American Music
New Order - The Village
Yo La Tengo - Lewis
Ought - Habit
Lambchop - Let’s Go Bowling
Eureka California - Edith (One Day You’ll Be In A Bunker)
The Lovely Bad Things - Hear Or Anywhere
Pavement - Major Leagues
Adam Daniel - Her Shake
The Lafayettes - Life’s Too Short
Rush - Marathon (Live)
Joni Mitchell - River
The Seeds - Can’t Seem To Make You Mine
Sourpatch - Cynthia Ann
Paul Westerberg - Postcards From Paradise
Bettie Serveert - Heaven
The National - Learning
No Age - Every Artist Needs A Tragedy
Modest Mouse - Novocain Stain
Neil Young - Hank To Hendrix (Live)
Be ready - the songs jump from quiet to loud