Radio Times

There’s a song by P!nk (I like to spell people’s names right) that says “count your blessings now”. Now, this song is outdated in the way that it hasn’t quite acquired the status of a classic jam, but it is also way too old to be called ‘new’. So exacty the kind of spong that they never play on the radio. You would think so. My friends, I have news for you: German radios defy all conventions. If they like a song, they just keep playing it, for years and years. Until now I have had an ambivalent opinion about it (after all they seemed to keep playing exactly the songs you did not want to remember from an era), but I think I am now ready to embrace it.

In the UK, I always found it hard to find a radio station that I could listen too for a longer period of time. Don’t get me wrong, there are some excellent stations there, but they just don’t have the qualities that my homemade playlists had: Variety, most of all. If I listened to BBC Radio 1, I was always exposed to super hip music, Radio 6 played extremely alternative and indie music 24/7. Now, I think even Australia’s Triple J, which I just adore, could be improved by a more diverse repertoire. I must admit, they are doing it pretty damn good already, with rap music (the good kind) alternating with pop tunes followed by alternative rock. But, you know, how about inserting some 80s tunes into the mix? Or the best of the last twenty years? Okay, I can’t help it, here is my list of the top 10 songs that I’d like to hear on Triple J, jumbled in between their usual mix:

  1. Toploader – Dancing In The Moonlight
  2. Nelly Furtado – Promiscuous
  3. Men At Work – Down Under
  4. 50 Cent – In Da Club
  5. Jlo – Jenny From The Block (or was it ‘Da Block’?)
  6. Foreigner – Cold As Ice
  7. Toto – Africa
  8. Anything by Blondie or the Bee Gees
  9. Anything by Britney, The Black Eyed Peas, Natasha Bedingfield, Shakira, Backstreet Boys or Sean Paul (remember that guy?!)
  10. Steve Miller Band – Abracadabra

So here I am, counting my blessings. One of them is definitely the defiant manner of German radios, playing all the gems (and everything else that couldn’t exactly be described as such).

B x

Advertisements

Keeping Up With… Music

And on and on we go on this journey through the cultural highlights of my life. Today’s topic: Music! In particular: How to keep up with contemporary music! Yay! So, here we go:

I love music. Really, really do. My problem: There is just SO MUCH music out there. When and where am I meant to listen to all of that, make up my mind about whether I like it or not AND the listen to it repeatedly (learn all the words, go to the artist’s gigs, become a wholehearted fan,…). It just seems impossible. And this is just music. Music is probably the most low-maintenance of the things I’d like to keep up to date with. I can listen to music WHILE doing other things. This ain’t so easy with things like books or TV that require our more or less undivided attention. Still, I mainly end up listening to music that I know and love.

The solution: Radio! Ay! The easy yet classic answer to my problem.

Now, to pick up the pace a bit: My favourite radio station is called Triple J (you can listen to it here). You will find that it is Australian which renders all kind of things besides music absolutely useless (especially weather forecasts and anything like morning shows, seeing as they are in a completely different time zone) but all the more fun to listen to.

Plus, most importantly, they have a great mix of the newest, hippest music. The highlight: Every year, the listeners vote the ‘Triple J Hottest 100’. This year’s countdown will take place on January 26th.

Are there any other radio stations you listen too that I should know about?

B x

Parrots and Hipsterhood

In my opinion we should not try and describe everything with words. At university especially the scholars tend to ruin great works of literature and pieces of art by interpreting and analyzing them. On the other hand, we normal people often only recognize such great works only if they have been loaded with meaning and cultural significance.

So, yes, today’s shared item is by one of the great artists that we recognize as sch immediately, and no, I probably would not know this painting if it wasn’t as widely known. But it feeling something close to guilt about liking something that many others also like is one of those absurdities of modern day pop culture and although I know that it has affected my behaviour so much that it scares me (the other day I found myself justifying myself for liking a song that they have been playing on the radio frequently for the past year…), I will break with this today just for once and declare what my favourite painting is without having to explain myself or making excuses.

This is it (I love especially the cheeky cigarette): Frida Kahlo’s ‘Yo Y Mis Pericos’

What is your favourite painting or “guilty” pleasure?

B x

Trashy TV and Very Little Time

My plan to write posts in advance has failed miserably. At first, I wrote the posts for the following day, which was not too bad, but now I have about 15 minutes in order not to fail my resolution to “blog daily”, plus my battery is running low. Life is tough (or ‘toff’ as they’d say in Chelsea). But I can do this.

Here we go. Today, I’d like to share my favourite reality TV show. We all watch some horrible TV, or read some horrible fiction or listen to horrible music because we enjoy it, and there’s no reason to feel ashamed about it.

I love reality TV because it gives me the illusion that those characters are real, and therefore judging them and their choices is much more fun. It is also amazing how invested you become in those people’s fortunes. And as it is ‘real’ it feels less pathetic to root for a particular relationship or person. Of course we feel the same way about fiction (please, don’t tell me you didn’t cross your fingers that Lizzie Bennett and Mr Darcy would get together already). But it all feels a lot less definite on reality TV. Such fun.

So, my all-time favourite reality TV show is “Made in Chelsea”. If you haven’t already, please, please watch it.

(I’M RUNNING OUT OF TIME, NEED TO TYPE FASTER)

It is basically about these rich kids in their early twenties in Chelsea (posh bit of Central London), and all they do is hang out in cafes and bars and there’s intrigues and everyone has slept with everything. It is hilarious and so great.

This ad for season 5 is perfect to describe how it all works (in a lovely ironic manner):

So, that’s that for now. Oh, I almost forgot. The close runner up to MIC (yes, acronym for Made in Chelsea) is Take Me Out. I know this is a format that exists in several countries, so please consider that I’m talking about the UK version that is hosted by that horrible and hilarious Paddy (… don’t know the last name and no time to look it up). It is the exact opposite of MIC in terms of poshness, but equally misogynistic and trashy.

B x