I wrote a menu with a variety of goals for myself in 2017. At the time, I liked the idea of having many things from which to choose to do. As the year progressed, the amount of goals felt daunting—even though I never set out to accomplish all of them. It’s nice to have options but I think next year I want to focus on one or two big goals per category.
2017: My Year in Music
2017 Music Goals
The list below is the original list I wrote in 2016. I crossed off items throughout 2017 as I decided I no longer wanted to work on them.
- Listen to more new artists.
- I made a playlist on Spotify called “Spankin’ New” and filled it with new releases I found from various sources, including: nme.com, The Current, word of mouth, and by stalking playlists of friends who have good music taste (mostly Stephanie, Ryan, and Cory).
Hone some DJ skills.
- Learn more about vinyl. ✅
- The first book I read in 2017 was A Beginner’s Guide to Vinyl, which gave me lots of info about vinyl, including the proper way to store it (we were doing it wrong).
- Setup stereo equipment
Fix dad’s receiverMaybe? This is another $$$ thing, so maybe it’s a 2018 goal.
- Get a shelving system (pretty one) that works for us ✅
- Although we have a stereo set up at home, it’s not in a place we typically hang out and the receiver/speakers are old and cut out sometimes, so I want to get some new (or new to us) speakers and fix up my dad’s old receiver.
- Create a digital backup copy of all of our music
- Mark’s CDs ✅
- My CDs ✅
- Cassette tapes
- I’m still trying to figure out the best way to make a copy of all our music on vinyl and cassette. I want something that doesn’t require me to babysit it (for every track) and I haven’t found this.
What I listened to in 2017
- More hip-hop and country
- I actively sought out country for the first time. Skeeter Davis is my favorite old country discovery. Sturgill Simpson is my favorite new country(ish?) artist.
- Great live music
- We listened to less vinyl than in the previous few years. This is possibly because we spend most of our time either in the kitchen or in the basement and our stereo is set up in the living room upstairs. We also purchased less vinyl this year but that’s because we’re out of space (for now).
- TONS of new and new-to-me artists
What I listened to According to Last.fm
No, it’s not 2005 anymore, but I still use last.fm.
According to last.fm, my 2017 top artists, albums, and tracks are old favorites, but the number of plays for these artists are lower than the number of plays for my top artists in years past. Instead of allowing myself to binge listen to the same artists, I plowed through a huge amount of new music this year. I don’t know the total hours of new music I listened to because I deleted things once I listened to them, but at any given time I had 200+ hours of music in the “Spankin’ New” playlist. It became clear I would never get through my list, so I started listening to only a few tracks per album to decide if I liked it.
Outside of new music, I continued my obsession with Hole‘s “Live Through This“; went through a Tom Petty phase over the summer (reliving college years, obviously); continued to adore Bowie, Prince, Smashing Pumpkins, and T. Rex; and enjoyed lots of electronic and 90s tunes. I discovered Portishead (years late) and am in love with “Dummy“, but I haven’t binge listened like I did with Hole—yet.
Last.fm doesn’t reflect my physical media because I don’t take the time to scrobble everything all the time (there’s a Universal Scrobbler out there). Here’s a graphic of what last.fm tracked this year.
I also keep track of our vinyl collection on Discogs.com, and this year we only purchased 6 albums (and by “we” I mean I purchased four of these for myself and Mark picked two). I finally decided to pick up a repressed “Live Through This” even though I really want a vintage copy (even if it’s on cassette). Obviously I needed to get Billy (WPC) Corgan’s new album (hello, pink vinyl!) and the Twin Peaks/Fire Walk With Me soundtracks with the new and beautiful packaging. And when Tom Petty died I noticed we didn’t have any in our collection (my dad has all the Petty we purchased). But we are seriously out of room now.
I had a pretty great year in music. What did you listen to in 2017?