Dennis D. McDonald ( consults from Alexandria Virginia. His services include writing & research, proposal development, and project management.

Music for the Dead?

Back in the 90's, having switched to CD's from LP's, I invested heavily in "smooth jazz" before I realized how much better "real jazz" is. Nowadays I avoid "smooth jazz" stations on the radio and their limited playlists (sometimes I think they add only one or two new songs every year). Now I stick mostly to jazz, latin jazz, latin pop, movie soundtracks, and classical.

Streaming audio via iTunes has however allowed me to experiment. There's a lot of stuff out there. I'm still not interested in rap, blues, country, or "easy listening" (more on that later). I have been dipping into iTunes' categories of radio stations called "ambient" and "electronica" and sub-categories such as "deep house,"trance," and "classic techno."

My my but a lot of this stuff sounds familiar. A quick trip to pages on Wikipedia explains why. Turns out I was listening to the ancestors of this stuff many years ago -- folks like Donna Summers, Pink Floyd, Hawkwind, Kraftwerk, and Tangerine Dream. Nowadays there's a lot more sampling going on, and the drone's the thing, with drum machines providing a solid basis for much of this.

Sometimes I'm in the mood, and sometimes I'm not. For some moods, only a Josef Haydn symphony will do. At other times, let the machines roll.

Question -- how do you dance to such music? My Arthur Murray instructions didn't go into that much detail...

iTunes and Classical Music