Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Ringing in the New Year with a new series

Happy New Years everyone.  This is my new Blog site.  Four years ago I launched what turned out to be a 100 week "Gem Video" series via email, showcasing a song a week and (with varying degrees of succes) tracking a video that would do it honors.  Accompanying the music video were personal insights and memories, stewed together earlier that week as I honed my talking points while thinking about the upcoming "Gem".
Since the series ended two years ago, I've occasionally been poked and prodded by a number of you to start it up again.  After much thought, I've concluded that though I can't repeat the Gem concept verbatim, I may have an idea on how to follow up.
The Gem Video series covered a broad range of musicians. This time around I could zero in on the ones I know best, possibly allowing me to get a bit deeper into the songs. The sacrifice will likely be the videos, as I plan on digging deep into the catalogs of these musicians so it is unlikely there will be a video for everything. It's amazing what's out there, though, even if it's just some still-shot video a fan may have put together.
There are a handful of bands/musicians whom I believe I am well versed in, including The Who, The Beatles, Bob Dylan, Neil Young, The Kinks and a few others.  The idea would be to remain focused on one band/musician for an extended period of time (a year?) and flesh out as much as I can in the process, while trying to recall what had me enjoy the band/album/song in the first place. It's mostly a process of rediscovery, but I do hope to make a few new discoveries as well. 
But who could I start out with?  I think this part falls together pretty nicely, as the Rolling Stones (and I) celebrate 50 years in 2012.  Starting off with the Rolling Stones is a bit risky.  While most musicians I follow have a clear intellectual and moral compass, the Stones are much more visceral. I hope to bring some of this visceral element to light. My goal is not to glorify the Stones but to simply try and recognize how brilliantly bands can gel and how a collective whole can be head and shoulders beyond the sum of its parts.  Scorsese gave it a try.  Now it's my turn.
I can't guarantee this series will be weekly, but I will give it a go.  If reviewing the Stones over the course of the year does not leave me torn and frayed, I'll move on to others
Expect the first installment later this week.

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