Thirteen of my favorite books from the 2010’s

I start feeling reflective when something comes to an end, and closing out a decade magnifies the impulse, so I’d like to share some of my favorite reading over the last ten years. The following list doesn’t claim that these books are the best; there’s too much to read and too little time to crown that kind of superlative. These are just a few that I personally found thoughtful, enjoyable, interesting, and worth spending some time with. I’ve been influenced so much by recommendations from others’ lists over the years, and led to topics and ideas I wouldn’t have sought on my own. I hope that by sharing this, I can do the same for you. You are Not a Gadget, Jaron Lanier (2010) Lanier’s book opened the decade up with prescient questions about the relationship we have with technology, and set the table for several of the other books …

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The Music I Listened to in 2018 (#24-1)

In 2018, I listened to over 1,700 different musicians (and +10k unique songs) on Spotify. My last post broke down the artists that made up my top 50-25. Here’s the rest of what I listened to the most in 2018: 24. The Roots There’s probably nothing I could say about The Roots that I (or a bunch of other people) haven’t already said. BUT – this year I saw Black Thought’s unbelievable TEN MINUTE LONG freestyle on YouTube, and it was like I was hearing someone invent rap all over again for the first time – HE’S TOO GOOD. Watch it. 23. Thelonius Monk I’m certain there are enough Monk recordings out there for real jazz students to make a career out of knowing it all, but my listening has been comprised of just two albums: “Alone in Paris” and “Piano Solos.” The material is similar – both include “Round …

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Wolf Alice performing at the 9:30 Club in Washington DC

The Music I Listened To in 2017: (#24-1)

I listened to 544.66 hours of music on Spotify this year – about 13 full-time workweeks – and captured all the data with Last.fm. The ranking is ordered by how many times I listened to a song by the artist, with #1 claiming the most listens. My top 50-25 artists were published in the last post. So here, without further ado, are the rest of them. My #24-1 most listened artists of 2017: 24. Anderson .Paak .Paak may have crept into the top 50% of my artists this year on the strength of his NPR Tiny Desk concert alone. I probably watched it 30 times this year. His record ‘Malibu’ is great too. 23. Jon Hopkins Surreal soundscapes that thrive on simplicity. Hopkins can have an impact as strong as an artist who goes five times as loud because of the clarity of his compositions. 22. Eric Satie When I …

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The Music I Listened to in 2017 (#50-25)

A long while ago, the painter Paul Gauguin wrote: “To be an honest critic, one must not love.” So maybe writing this post makes me dishonest, but I’ll take the risk: I’ve put together a list of the top 50 musicians that I loved in 2017. This is the time of year when all the critics start listing things. The top ten this and the top twenty that. I listened to Rolling Stone’s ‘Top 50 Albums of 2017’ podcast a few days ago and caught the bug. I’m going to borrow their format, but they can keep their judgments and assumptions about how the newest things matter the most. Unlike them, there is nothing timely about these rankings. Many of the artists had nothing to do with the year 2017. Look for the zeitgeist somewhere else. I listened to 544.66 hours of music on Spotify this year – about 13 …

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