It appears that the only subject on my list left to confess about is that of music. That happens to be a very delicate subject for me. Oddly enough, I don't listen to as much music as I used to and probably not nearly as much as I should since I used to find it a great healer and source of joy. From my earliest days music was like 97% of my life starting with classic jazz and blues, the wonderful Big Band years and the series of great vocalists (Sinatra, Nat Cole, June Christy and even Doris Day) of that era and later into the 50's. In addition to pop music I was also in love with much classical music and opera and I had some kind of music going most of the time during my waking hours. I had a good sound system for playing my hundreds of records and, if that wasn't convenient there was always the radio. No matter what station I turned on, some of my music came out. And it was Good!
Then ghastly things started to happen. Slowly, almost imperceptibly, the music that emerged from the radio ceased to soothe or excite me and began to grate on my nerves and leave me unsatisfied.. The stuff called rock and roll wasn't bad, but next came.... well....... non-musical gibberish. My favorites began to disappear, replaced by stuff that I did not consider to be music.........since this is confession time I must admit that music without a melody ain't music to me....I don't care how profound the lyrics may be or how politically correct, how floor-vibrating the drum or ear splitting the volume, if there is no tune I can hum and no beat that I can sway to or tap my feet to and if the piece, in its entirety, consists of nothing but the same limited set of unrelated notes and words repeated ad nauseum from one end to the other, it is not music to me. I don't care how loud it is or how piercingly the vocalist screeches.........it's NOT music. So there went the radio as a useful piece of equipment. My stuff could no longer be found there on any kind of regular basis.
At the same time, technology blew up in my face and demanded that instead of my nice simple collection of records which revolved at 33 1/3 rpms and the older ones at 45 and 78 rpms (and could be played on a single machine) I now needed new machines of all sorts to play the new medium of tapes of several different sizes whose labels were just plain too small and damned difficult to read and which seemed so impermanent besides (witness the strange black coils I used to see discarded in frustration on every freeway I traveled....... I suspected these were once official music of some kind) ............well, I just buried my face in the pillow, sobbed heavily and gave up in defeat........particularly since it became heartbreaking to me to realize that the music that I adored and responded to had literally disappeared and no longer existed except for fragments which had been chosen to be preserved for posterity on the newest media called CD's but not really played or listened to (except for a few old codgers like me.)
Even Classical music is having a tough time surviving and maintaining any kind of any audience these days and I have occasional bad dreams in which Bach and Mozart and their ilk fade into anonymity and the gorgeous arias and orchestral passages of operas disappear with the only parts remaining the occasional brief spoken "recicatives." And, I have so many different music playing devices and so many different kinds of media that it all seems simply too damned much trouble. I do not understand what "music" has come to.
Of course it won't surprise you to find that my naive and unsophisticated tastes extend to Musical Theater as well...........- not the one trick pony of Lloyd Webber's Phantom of the Opera.....but rather Bernstein's infinitely brilliant "Candide"(both music and lyrics) ......or Queen Letifah's - paean to Reciprocity ("When You're Good to Mama, Mama's Good to You)" and John C. Reilly breath-taking performance of "Mr. Cellophane" ....both in the musical triumph, "Chicago".
Naturally Everything by Gilbert and Sullivan though I must admit that overindulging in too much of a good thing can make a person a bit sick and tired....... fortunately this wears off and in time I am ready again for their tunes and their wit.
Classical music - nothing much later than Debussy......most everything Baroque, .Beethoven's Violin Concerto, Schubert's "Death and the Maiden", Bach's Brandenbergs and Preludes and Fugues, anything by Mozart......Verde, Puccini .......gotta stop.
Jazz- anything by Louie especially West End Blues, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Teagarden, Red Nichols, Goodman's soulful liquid clarinet on "Can't We Be Friends",...I could go on endlessly on this one but I will just add Billie Holliday and Ella, Johnny Mercer and maybe Nina Simone........ and of course anything by Pete Daily
I did movies in chapter 2 of this expose but forgot a couple..... The Hustler, Unforgiven, Chinatown and, while we are at it, why not Casablanca and Maltese Falcon.
OK.......that is as much of a fool as I am willing to make of myself at one time. However, I am sure I have many more shocking revelations to tantalize or horrify you with in the future, so do come back.