Oh good, Orhan Pamuk won the Nobel Prize. It makes me happy. Are they including immunity from undeserved trials along with the citation and the moolah for the prizes this year, I wonder?
Anyway, unsurprisingly, I got memed again, this time by the gracious Szerelem - great reference, wot? - to list the top ten songs on my iTunes. I've switched to Winamp lately out of a perverse desire to cleanse my soul, but the song, as the great wizard Robert Plant would say, remains the same. Here goes.
1. Ay Ay - Tarkan. Ooof. This man reminds me of how heterosexual I am. It's funny because he doesn't really fall into my 'type,' but over time I have discovered that my 'type' includes neurotic, waifish, unwashed, plain nuts, and outright retrosexual, so I give up aiming for consistency. I love this song. It's smoky hawt, very lazily bump-and-grindy, a far cry from his notorious Kiss Kiss number, 'Simarik,' which also - shut up - I love.
2. Uma Casa Portugesa - Amália Rodriguez. Isheeta is my enabler. I don't know anyone who holds a candle to my fellow DLG-er for sheer good taste. She's been supplying me with Portuguese folk lately, and the last thing I did before I dropped off to sleep last night was listen to Amália Rodriguez. I hate displaying my ignorance of the song's genre or language by talking about its feel, but the mood is incredible. Hold on to something while I borrow an image from nature: it's like standing under a tree on a sunny morning, with shafts of light dappling the shadows. Amalia is rightly called a queen among her own. Her voice is sweet like honey, and strong as steel wire. (Overwrought fanfic about elves, here I come.)
3. Marlene On The Wall - Suzanne Vega. Spare and catchy American female indie-folk-pop. I love this sort of thing, right from Joan Baez and Joni Mitchell to the more self-conscious work of Beth Orton and Suzanne. Her 'changing, changing, changing,' at the end of the song makes me smile every time.
4. Raga Bhatiyar (khayal in madhyalaya teentaal) - Pandit Jasraj. Inadequate resources to describe this: look at this blog for some attempt at description. I'm a big old soppy Jasraj fan, ever since his morning concert four years ago in the Xavier's quadrangle when I was stumbling about in a sari looking for my friends and he threw six million tantrums and ended up making everyone weep with joy and dance in the aisles like Woodstock hippies as he sang 'Govind Damodar Madhaveti' to the lightening skies. My kaajal was everywhere (the sari, thanks to Kate, stayed on).
5. Defend Her, Heav'n, Theodora! - Artiste unknown. Possibly Handel's most famous aria, from the oratorio - you'll never guess - Theodora. Defend her heav'n/let angels spread/their viewless tents around her bed. A soaring, swelling lullaby, perfect for stormy nights and unspoken doubts. I'm afraid I have no idea who sang this version - it is not, sadly, the sublime Lorraine Hunt-Lieberson - but it's very passable.
6. Suffragette City - David Bowie. Punk and glam have been working their unsubtle magicks upon me. A Bowie classic, I forgot about this song for a goodly while until I happened to stumble (NO SRSLY TRIPPED AND FELL ON THE REMOTE) upon an episode of 'Rockstar:Supernova' on the telly and found the big sassy blonde in a suit rocking the hell out of it. I like to drop-kick annoying people to this song. I cannot account for my affection of the phrase "Wham, bam, thank you ma'am" when Davie B sings it.
7. City Hall - Vienna Teng. Not a maker of my favourite sort of girl-music - sorry, but if I want emo I'll take the eyeliner-wearing boys, you know? - but this particular song is just delightful. It's about the Valentine's Day weekend in 2004 when San Francisco defied constitutional law to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Bittersweet and just a little bit cheesy, but infinitely hummable and full of hope. Outside they're handing out doughnuts and pizza pies/for the folks in pairs/in the folding chairs/my baby's looking so damn pretty with those anxious eyes/rain-speckled hair, and my ring to wear ....
8. Jaded - Aerosmith. I listened to this song on a friend's system the other day and went, 'why, god, why?' And then I listened to it three hundred times on repeat, saying, "oh my god, oh my god, I REMEMBER THIS SONG." It's so bad it's ridiculous. My subconscious has been telling me for years to give up the pretense and embrace my secret love of Steven Tyler. I should really get down to it some day.
9. I Wear My Sexyback At Night (cheekyboy edit) - Justin Timberlake v/s Corey Hart. Courtesy of the ever-reliable Aurgasm. It's so funny to hear people you're accustomed to thinking of wimpy pre-teens singing songs about shackles and whips. Still, one of the comfortable things about dance pop is that it renders your common standards and perceptions of music, things about voices and words and tunes and ideas, quite superfluous. I haven't actually heard the original of either of these songs, nor yet seen the videos, but I trust this version improves them muchly. It's dead sexy.
10. Suddenly I See - KT Tunstall. KT's first album has already taken her past indieness into the stratosphere of pop-snob popularity - you know this happens when you listen to an obscure artist you love and right next week start hearing their songs on soundtracks to television shows, animated movies, or, as in the case of this song, inanimated movies - it's the opening track to The Devil Wears Prada. Simply delightful. Every time I play this song I think about girls in whose admiration my heart wearies - Lindsey and Flatmate #1, for example. She fills up every corner like she's born in black and white - how affectionate! How funny!
bonus track(s): The Abbey Road suite. Sometimes, all it takes to change the world is ten minutes of pop music.
I tag thee all. Take up thy illegal mp3s and walk.