In a meeting, thus I tend the James Dedman Music Challenge


I’ve resisted answering this because I thought it was kinda stupid, but as I’m in a situation where I have time to kill…

What is the total amount of music files on your computer?

Well point one is that these files are not actually on my computer, I have them on a Network Attached storage device + USB hard-drive set up. I ran a recursive find out of an Xterm with

_find . -name “*mp3” | wc -l _

Came up with 13,345 files. I consider that about right given that I have about 4 disc notebooks full of discs. It’s all ancillary to the life of petty hedonism I live.

What is the last CD you bought?

While Dedman is sure to think that I with all my hipster talent will say something like “So So Many White White Tigers” or “Teagan and Sarah” I actually have acquired the rather pedestrian CDs listed below. Being that I acquired them all at the same time (this being the last time I bought physical, actual CDs v. iTunes Music Store) I’d be hard-pressed to identify last, so I shall give all three.

  • Fiddy Cent - The Massacre

Say the name with her voice - it’s funnier


  • The Postal Service - Give Up

  • Keane - Hopes and Fears

What was the last song you listened to before reading this message?

Interpol’s “Leif Eriksen” from their album “Turn on the Bright Lights”.

I love Interpol and I especially loved this first record. It reminds me of winter on Potrero Hill - it’s so moody, dark and beautiful. I’m not such a particular fan of this song per se, but this album as a whole is amazing.

Write down five songs you often listen to, or that mean a lot to you

  1. Heather Nova, “Maybe an Angel”, Live at the Melkweg.

The Melkweg is this great live music venue in Amsterdam (I saw The Squirrel Nut Zippers there, what a hoot) right on the water near the Museumplein. Heather belts out this number with her fragile and wounded voice. She moves from these keening wails to near silent whispers with impunity. It also seems to surface on the iPod at perfect moments - coming off the Golden Gate and winding through the Marina - landing in Barcelona - always perfect timing.

Something I feel / You are an angel, or maybe you could?ve been / Something out here / You are an angel or maybe you could?ve been /

She really peaks out on the words ‘feel’ and ‘here’.

  1. “I’m Set Free”, the Velvet Underground

I’m not sure if this was written because Lou had kicked something or because Lou had just shot up a something but either way, it’s nice to feel like you have possibilities.

It’s definitely a bit of a twist message - you can be liberated, but liberated only to find a new illusion to be a slave to – and even then, that’s a type of liberation too.

Very Buddhist, really.

  1. “Marian”, The Sisters of Mercy

I hear you calling Marian / Across the water, across the wave / I hear you calling Marian / Can you hear me calling you to / Save me, save me, save me… /

The whole water metaphor pervades this song and the second verse is in German. It’s steely and haunting - most SOM music is like that.

  1. “Smile Like You Mean It” - The Killers

I think this is the top new band of the last year. This song plus their other hits “Mr. Brightside” and “Somebody told me” should entice you to get their record “The Hot Fuss”.

  1. “Cease2xist” - Ladytron

I love the dark synth work. I like their visual element as well.

Who will you pass this to?