Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Music and Mysteries

Charlie Harris from Miranda James' "Cat in the Stacks" mysteries

I was never much of a musician, though I did play the clarinet in the high school marching band, but music has been an essential part of my life for as long as I can remember. Neither of my parents was particularly musical, but I remember them listening to music on the radio or the stereo all through my childhood. My father, a Marine in World War II was a huge Glen Miller fan, and my mother was too.

There was also music at church, the hymns I leared as a small boy and can still sing -- badly off-key -- even today. I remember the music of the 60s, though I was very young during that decade, but I have a dim memory of having seen Diana Ross and the Supremes on the "Ed Sullivan Show" and the Beatles too. I didn't really start listening to popular music, though, until I was a teenager in the mid- to late 70s, and later on in college. Elton John, ABBA, the Captain and Tenille, Donna Summer, the Carpenters and the BeeGees -- the kind of pop music that so many sneer at these days. But those are the songs I remember from then.

I learned more about classical music from being in the band and taking music appreciation in college -- though, as it turns out, I had absorbed a certain amount of it without even realizing it. All thanks to Loony Tunes! To this day, I can't hear "The Ride of the Valkyries" and keep a straight face -- the music immediately brings to mind Elmer Fudd trying to woo Bugs Bunny in Brunhilde drag.

One of the reasons I love being a cataloger -- and the fact that I am now cataloging again instead of running a public library branch -- is that I can listen to music while I work. Diesel loves music too, though he seems to be more fond of classical than anything else. I suppose I have a slightly highbrow cat!

I'm very eclectic -- classical, even opera, for a while, then pop music, movie soundtracks, whatever seems to fit the mood. Sometimes I can almost hear a soundtrack playing when something important happens -- like when I find a dead body. Ominous, brooding, Hitchcockian even. Of course, I don't dare mention this to Kanesha Berry, the Chief Deputy of Athena County, or she really will think I'm loopy....


  1. I'm becoming very fond of marches played by a marching band, and of a certain trumpet player in that band...

  2. I listen to classical music when I clean my house. There's something about the strings, the brass and the tempo that makes cleaning a joy.

  3. It's nice to know I'm not alone in the department of hearing a soundtrack to your life... LOL! The tune I hear most is Clair de Lune.

  4. Dru, I'm going to have to try your way of cleaning. I definitely need some inspiration!

  5. "All music was classical once." As a former high school percussionist, I'm driving everyone nuts at stop lights with San Francisco Symphony playing Mendlessohn...very loud tympani...

  6. I too am eclectic when it comes to music. Everything from classical to 50s, 60s, 70s rock and roll, Big band, old time country, cajan, and the hymns at church.Plus what ever strikes me at the moment. Opera not so much. But gotta give credit to those singers....man what range and strength of voice.

  7. Fascinating post and comments! I, too, must adopt Dru's cleaning method. I'm fairly certain that never in my life have I used "cleaning" and "joy" in the same sentence!

    I did have a bird who sang along with opera and country music . . .

    ~ Krista