Phil The Ears Music

I’ve got the time now. Music swirls like a steamy gumbo of genres in my house, car and even outdoors from my balcony speakers or through in-ear molded earphones while I’m on my bike riding on the beach or through trails.

“After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.” Aldous Huxley

I’ve got the gear too with a new turntable, Mystique, integrated valve amp and Richter speakers as well as a set of Bose systems throughout the house. So for the next couple of years, I’m devoting a lot of time to convert the 5000+ vinyl albums from the 60s, 70s and 80s plus a few from the 90s into high bit rate files by cleaning each record and ripping them. Already I’m being transformed with this rich analogue treasure trove of tunes. Revelations come daily as I listen to my old friends who have been laying in repose for a couple of decades.

“Without Music, Life Would Be A Mistake” Frederick Nietzsche

I’ve got over 75,000 songs already taken from a CD collection and another 25,000 from iTunes, Amazon and Munck Music live concerts. All legal and a lot of it fairly unheard of here in Australia since I’m buying mine from the US. The new injection of vinyl is already yielding a wealth of music that was never put onto CD or if it was, it was withdrawn or out of print quickly and not really online.

“I’ll play it for you now, you tell me what it is later.” Miles Davis.

I’ve also got the devotion and dedication to do this since I don’t play golf, fish, bowl or watch sport. I’ve been branded unpatriotic because I have next to no Australian music. But this is more because my tastes lie in the deep soul and dirt of America, its jazz, country, roots, smooth jazz, R&B and other genres. Hawaiian music has a special place in my heart—slack key guitar and hula. If the day comes that I start to yearn for opera, it’s time to go. Desiring classical would be a warning sign.

“Opera is when a guy gets stabbed in the back and, instead of bleeding, he sings.”
Ed Gardner

That’s because my ears are tuned to Southern Rock from the white boys and all that Race Music from the Black Fellas. I was lucky to have lived my prime years from 1965 to 1980 in the US, primarily The South. And I’ve been blessed to have sound-mixed, stage-managed, worked with and toured alongside some of the great players and singers of our time. It’s no wonder some of my Top 25 favourites are The Allman Brothers, Little Feat, Ella Fitzgerald, The Meters and Neville Brothers, Duke Ellington, Dr. John, Allen Toussaint, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Acoustic Alchemy, HAPA, Buddy Guy, Delbert McClinton, The Winter Brothers, Jeff Beck, James Brown, Jon Cleary, Martin Taylor, Larry Carlton, Lee Ritenour, Muddy Waters, Stevie Ray and of course Willie Nelson… it’s hard to choose.

“I’ve made hundreds of legendary records that people talk about that didn’t sell.” Jerry Wexler

But don’t send me anything. I really don’t want to waste time of the little I have left on unknown and possibly unappreciated artists and songs. I’ve got so much music to listen to, relisten to and then obsess about… well, time’s a wastin’!

“Modern music is people who can’t think signing artists who can’t write songs to make records for people who can’t hear.” 
Frank Zappa