The first record I remember getting my hands on in a real way was Paul Simon’s Graceland. I had been listening to music for years, of course, but this record was different. I sought it out on my own, mowed my neighbor’s yard to get money for it and begged my mom to take me to the cd store to buy it.
Backing up – I lived in Okinawa, Japan at the time and one day while shopping for school clothes I heard “Diamonds on the Souls of Her Shoes” for the first time blasting from a cheap boom box behind the register at a counterfeit clothing shop on the infamous gate 2 street. The shops were all the same. An organized chaos of musty smelling fake Quicksilver T-shirts missing the “i” in “silver” or phony Hugo Boss sweatshirts made in Korea with Boss monogrammed on them twelve times with no mention of Hugo. I digress, the sounds pulled me in right away. I leaned in through the door to hear more. A chorus of Africans, harmonies, voices that fit together so seamlessly they sounded like a gentle army. I asked the shop keeper what he was listening to and through his thick accent, possibly Japanese, but more likely to be a transplant from Thailand, he said Paul Simon.
I’m almost sure I was wearing a completely blank expression because a) I had no idea who Paul Simon was and b) He went on to say “you know, Simon and Garfunkel? Mrs Robinson?” Boom! A lightbulb went on. I loved that song, my mom listened to Simon and Garfunkel on her record player. I thought, “I have to get this album. I want it. I need it!”
The following day I went to the CD shop on the Air Force base where my dad worked and ponied up the 16 bucks that mowing neighbors yards had earned me. Up to that point I hadn’t spent much time seeking out music, let alone obsessing over it – the lyrics, the melodies, the arrangements. All of the sudden my identity was wrapped up in being a music connoisseur and a record collector. I must have bought 20 albums that summer after discovering Graceland. It’s still to this day one of my top 5 favorite albums. Here’s to you Mr. Fake Nike shoe salesman. Thanks for tuning me in.
Ft. Worth, TX based Telegraph Canyon released the critically acclaimed The Tide and The Current way back in 2009. The band will be in the studio in May (w/ producer W. Johnson of Centro-matic) to finish up their new full length. It will be a co-release of Velvet Blue Music / Spune.