Thursday, September 9, 2010

No iPod, No Problem: In Honor of Rich Cronin

The desk in my bedroom from High School. I wrote my of my songs from 2001-2005 that seat.

Last week I missed the 90s so much that I bought a portable Compact Disc player online. I fielded a few comments from friends about my choice. “Don’t you have an iPod?” they asked, “What’s a CD?” some joked, but hard-knocks aside I stand firmly beside my decision.

What music consumers aka the public-at-large forget is if you buy a physical CD and not the digital iTunes version of the album, then that CD is meant to be listened to on a CD player. That’s the only way to gain the optimal listening experience, since the CD was made for a CD player and not an MP3 player.

I haven’t wanted to grow up, hence my desperate attempts to rekindle what once made me tick a decade ago. At the age of 13, I was going into my final year at the Anshe Emet Day School, I was in the 8th grade, and had just told the other kids in my class that I started writing songs. That’s how I spent the summer of 2000.

They looked at me with prodding eyes. I felt defaced and demoralized. My mental strength was weakened by their disapproval, but that didn’t stop me. I kept writing, I kept singing, I took the stage and belted my heart out for all of them to hear. They’re disapproval shattered. They were embarrassed. I rested my case.

Fast-forward a decade later, I’ve recorded three albums with new music in the works. I’ve received a B.A. in Journalism and a minor in music theory and history. What are those kids from my 8th grade class doing? Well, I can’t say for sure. I know a lot of them are looking for jobs, have jobs, are in law school, or still trying to get a B.A. from a city college somewhere around Chicago.

Washington, D.C. has treated my lyrical soul well enough. In fact, after the horrible nightmare that was 2009 for myself and my family, 2010 is shaping up to be that of a whirlwind fantasy come to life.

It’s times like these, when I know how lucky I am to be where I am in life, that we must remember where we came from and why we’re here.

A decade ago I would bop my head to whatever pop track MTV’s Total Request Live shoved in my face. Quite frankly, they didn’t have to shove it in my face though. I loved it. I breathed it. 90s pop was my lifeline. After all, it was a weekend spent watching a Backstreet Boys special on Fox Family Channel that spawned my love for songwriting. That was twelve years ago.

In honor of 90s pop music and those who fed my creative mind with material to take and improve upon, this post is dedicated to Rich Cronin of LFO who passed away overnight due to complications with Leukemia.

To commemorate Rich and my childhood, I’m going to use my Compact Disc player every day for a week. No iPod.

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