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| 17 January 2014


Shane at Soundwave Festival 2012

It was 1980 when I bought my very first record with my own money, aged around 15 (more on that one later, though who knows why it took me so long – I’d certainly been exposed to good music before then. Maybe my first part time job had finally meant I had spare change to spend on music?), and since then my collection has increased exponentially to the point where I’ve completely lost count of how many I have.

Records, cassette tapes, CDs, music DVDs and even – in unfortunately ever-increasing numbers – digital albums. Bloody loads of ‘em. Thousands in fact. Some I have on vinyl AND CD AND remastered digital copies. Some obscurities and bootlegs I only have on degraded second- or third-generation cassette copies. There’s Heavy Metal, Blues, Rock, Pop, Alt Country, Country, Thrash, Pub Rock, Classic Rock, Prog Rock, Punk, Garage, Soundtracks, Electronica and a little bit of just about everything else that’s good.

I blame a teensy pinch of OCD behaviour – which I have (mostly) successfully chanelled into my music collection so as to isolate it from the rest of my life (that is, if you don’t include Doctor Who…) – sometimes you just HAVE to collect the entire output of a band that means that much to you, even if some of it is questionable!  Hell, seven years ago I realised I didn’t have room for them any more and painstakingly transferred every CD from its jewel case to a plastic sleeve to save space!

CDs, music DVDs, cassettes, vinyl on the bottom left and much more... Part 1

CDs, music DVDs, cassettes, vinyl on the bottom left and much more… Part 1

There’s so many albums – and so much new music coming in all the time, both as a fan, and as a music critic – that it has long occurred to me that I am unlikely to ever listen to them all again.

Hell – there’s some which I have to be honest and admit that I have NEVER ever listened to!

More Cds, cassettes, DVDs - all sorts of stuff

More Cds, cassettes, DVDs – all sorts of stuff

And maybe, just maybe, it’s that OCD-ness which has fuelled this challenge…

Here’s the rules:

Maybe I am mad, but completely independent of any serious music journalism work, I am going to listen to & write about pretty much every piece of music in my collection. (Personally, I think I deserve a medal for bravery, since in addition to all the bizarre and eclectic stuff that I have accumulated as my taste has weaved and changed dramatically over thirty-plus years as, there’s also dozens of my wife’s CDs which have strangely been assimilated into the collection in as stealthy a way as she stealth-moved-in to my house four and a half years ago!)

Listening will be in any random order I bloody want, for whatever reason takes my fancy.

I won’t bother with releases that I have reviewed in the past couple of years professionally – maybe later on down the track that’ll be relevant, but with so many older releases there that I’ve never written about, that’s my focus.

I won’t be writing well-researched reviews as such, more recollections and thoughts looking back on the music and the artists from the distance of however long has passed since they’ve been released, plus any anecdotes I deem worthy of sharing along the way.

Reviews generally shouldn’t be overly personal, but since this will be about my feelings about the music, and its personal impact on myself and my life, it will get as personal as I choose on any given day!

I’ll also rate them out of ten. The context of the album’s release and influence will play a part in my ratings, but mostly it will be how they made me feel then, and how I feel about them NOW.

If anyone’s around when I’m listening, maybe their comments will find their way in there as well…

Apart from that, pretty much anything goes. Especially since I bore easily and this is likely to take YEARS, so maybe I’ll spice the rules up as I go – we’ll just have to see what happens!!

With a little luck I will even get it all organised and collated as I go through it!!

10 Perfect (to me!)
9 A timeless classic
8 Ground breaking and still sounding strong today
7 Really good
6 Solid
5 Okay
4 Doesn’t hold up too well
3 Hard to sit all the way through
2 Oh dear… really?
1 Remind me why I have this?
0 There’s no reason to keep this – binning it NOW!

To start with, I’m calling this blog ‘Listen To The Music’. It seems fitting, even though ironically, I don’t own any Doobie Brothers! (I’ve just bought their Greatest Hits through Amazon, so I will include that soon)

So, to start, that first record that my brother and I went halves on in November 1980 – Adam & The Ants – Kings Of The Wild Frontier.

Thanks… Shane Pinnegar, 17 January, 2014

Category: Shane's Rock Challenge

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Editor, 100% ROCK MAGAZINE

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