I haven’t given Spotify a lot of data to churn yet, but its algorithm has correctly noted that I like Warren Zevon. So when Spotify puts together its suggested music queues full of artists I’ve never heard before, I end up hearing a lot of Warren Zevon songs I’ve never heard, because Spotify has many Many MANY more Warren Zevon albums than I knew existed.
Today I realized I always know the Warren Zevon songs within a chords or two, well before I heard his voice. There’s a deeply identifiable signature to his music.
Yes, I know, all songwriters and bands have a sound, but I’ve been known to ask, “Who’s this?” about the same SONG many times before being able to consistently ID the composer/performer. That’s a big indicator of how unique Zevon’s aural DNA are.
But wait, there’s more!
To my ear at least, Warren Zevon’s sound has something in common with Aaron Copeland’s compositions. I can’t begin to explain what that something is, but…especially in the slow ballads, as opposed to the hard bluesy stuff, the commonality is REALLY noticeable.
I suspect this isn’t a connection many (any) others would make, but it’s there for me. The sounds evoke similar feels. Something nostalgia-y, but not exactly nostalgic for anything I ever knew myself, more saudade-like, haunted acknowledgement of something distant in time and space.
I just wanted to make that observation before I forgot it. So I shared it.
That’s all for now.
One reply on “A random thing I’ve gleaned after listening to Spotify for 2 days”
All modern music builds on the same elements that previous music built on, so it’s not at all unlikely that you hear something Copeland-ish in Zevon’s music. I also think music we hear as small children – even if we’re not paying the slightest attention – lays the groundwork for what music will ‘fit’ with us later, so it may be that the reason Zevon’s music works for you to begin with has something to do with elements of the the music (whether Copeland or something similar in some way) you were exposed to as a child. Interesting post.