A friend tagged me in a “10 albums in 10 days” post over on Facebook last week. If you haven’t see it going around, the idea is you post an album cover from an album you’ve loved – 1 each day for 10 days. You’re also suppose to tag a person each day to do it and so on and so forth. I dropped the tagging right out of the gate. That sounds exhausting.
And, also, mostly right out of the gate, I dropped the 1 a day thing.
I’m good at many, many things, staying on schedule with a social media assignment isn’t one of them (as evident by my spotty blogging).
A couple of weeks before being tagged to do this, I was talking with my husband about turning my 10 favorite songs into a series of blog posts. When I hear a song on that list, I can very solidly say “OH, it’s a top 10… probably number 4” and I easily have 10 songs ranked. Why my brain works like that, I don’t know, but it does. The album selection has been a bit harder but thankfully it isn’t a top 10 album list so I have an out there. I may get to that song thing… but for now, I think blogging about each album will do. Since I don’t post info on FB about why it made the list, a blog post will allow for that creative release.
The first album I posted was not surprisingly (or maybe surprisingly to some of you) an Elton John album. Specifically, Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy. Elton was the first musician I obsessed over. And obsessed is putting it very mildly. Back in Jr. High – 8th grade I believe – my mom took me to see Elton John and Billy Joel on one of their Face to Face tours at Texas Stadium (may it rest in peace). In my head I remember that it was her last ditch effort to keep me from dropping piano lessons… I may be embellishing that a bit, but I’m sure the seed was planted somewhere in that vicinity.
She also gifted to me a mixed tape she had with “Rocket Man” on it and I listened to that song over and over. I very vividly remember laying on the floor of my bedroom rewinding that song over and over and over again. I was hooked. It wasn’t long until all of my allowance money went to CDs and used vinyl from Half Price Books to start building my collection (a collection of vinyl I still have to this day and am quite proud of). I brought my Jr. High best friend along for the ride and she became just as much of a fan as I did. We listened to records while laying on the floor of my room… or her room… as I imagine our mothers/aunts/etc doing when they were younger. We imagined meeting the artists performing… imagined living in the 70s so we could have been groupies (we were naïve for the most part I don’t think we truly knew what groupies were all about until Almost Famous came out years later… or maybe we did and I’d like to pretend I was more innocent than I really was)… essentially we’d get lost in these albums until the needle would pick itself up at the end and settle back into the cradle.
I eventually went to a total of 5 of his concerts before graduating HS. One in Vegas, one in Boston, a few in Dallas. It was a wild ride in the years leading up to that point, I was publically made fun of for being a fan of a gay musician (ugh – hello?!?!) and later publically apologized too which was almost worse (also, Jr. High boys that you’d later find out had a crush on you were absolutely the WORST), I had the opportunity to get an autograph after being hoisted over 3 rows of seats to get to the front row, I learned every Elton song I could on piano, played two of them for weddings, and had teenaged Elton John fan pen pals all over the world. Like I said, obsessed.
It wasn’t a hard choice to pick this album. Not only is every song fantastic, but the album art is spectacular. It’s the total package. I find myself going back to it time and time again – on vinyl, on CD, on Spotify – if you haven’t had a listen, check it out, you won’t be sorry.